Mangroves help enhance biodiversity and replenish our world’s ecosystems – both on land and sea.

A Biodiverse Bridge:

Mangroves are the bridge between the land and sea – providing a unique habitat that is crucial for many species. Their unique ecology of existing in two worlds means that they provide both an abundant habitat for land animals, as well as an ideal nursery and refuge for many marine species.

The world’s fish populations are currently in a state of rapid decline. Mangroves serve as a major nursery for most of the world’s tropical fish, who are dependent on them for part of their life cycle. These fish in turn help keep other ocean ecosystems – and those who depend on them – healthy.

Mangroves also help trap sediment from further inland that would otherwise flow straight into the ocean, thus making the areas nearby them more habitable for other valuable ecosystems like coral reefs, which are also under grave threat worldwide from ecological stressors.

Mangroves also provide an important habitat for many land-based animals, including endangered species. Overall, their unique nature makes them one of the world’s more versatile and biodiverse ecosystems.

MAP’s Impact: 

Promoting Healthy & Natural Mangrove Forests

One of MAP’s main aims is to promote not only mangrove conservation and restoration, but specifically preserving a more natural and biodiverse mangrove forest.

Whereas many restoration efforts depend on hand-replanting, such plantations, if successful, wind up in an unnatural monoculture which may not support as biodiverse or robust a habitat as the original mangrove forest. That is why MAP promotes its unique method of “Community-Based Ecological Mangrove Restoration” (CBEMR), which focuses on restoring the natural, biodiverse mangrove forest.

The key lies in restoring the original conditions under which mangroves grew in an area. Sometimes this requires fixing hydrological issues (reestablishing normal tidal flow in and out of an area, for instance), or sometimes something as simple as working with a community to keep cattle from overgrazing an area undergoing regeneration.

In addition, MAP works with local communities – both in the CBEMR process and through its Marvellous Mangroves educational curriculum – to value the biodiversity of their local mangrove forests, and informs them on how to interact with these forests to keep them healthy and productive, both for nature and people.

Other Ways You Can Help

  • Support the preservation of forests by purchasing sustainably-produced products, especially those that work in tandem with natural mangrove forests
  • Question Your Shrimp – does your shrimp come from sustainable sources, or from shrimp farms that were once thriving mangrove forests?
  • Avoid palm oil products where you can
  • Take part in community based eco-tourism like mangrove kayaking, mangrove boardwalks, and bird watching
  • Promote sustainable tourism – such as locally led initiatives instead of resorts that may have been built on top of cleared mangrove forests
  • Reduce plastic usage as much as possible, so that less trash winds up in mangrove forests

Click here to learn more about mangrove ecology:

You can help support MAP’s efforts to promote biodiverse and productive mangrove forests by making a monthly contribution. Thank you – we wouldn’t be able to do the work that we do without your support!