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    Impact of soil salinity on mangrove restoration in a semiarid region: a case study from the Saloum Delta, Senegal

    Devaney, John L. and Marone, Diatta and McElwain, Jennifer C. (2021) Impact of soil salinity on mangrove restoration in a semiarid region: a case study from the Saloum Delta, Senegal. Restoration Ecology, 29 (2). ISSN 1061-2971

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    Ongoing losses to mangrove forests globally have prompted increased interest in restoration programs that seek to restore vital ecosystem functions and services. In many cases, data on local-scale environmental tolerances of mangrove species used in reforestation efforts is lacking, and failure of restoration projects has been attributed to incorrect species selection in plantations. Here, we assess the impact of soil salinity on the early establishment success of monospecific red mangrove Rhizophora mangle reforestation projects in the Saloum Delta, Senegal, a region where widespread mangrove restoration efforts are ongoing. At soil salinities >60 ppt, stomatal conductance, photosystem II operating efficiency, and growth of planted R. mangle seedlings were severely reduced. Similarly, after 1–3 years, survival of mangrove seedlings decreased in soil salinities of >60 ppt. In contrast, we recorded naturally occurring black mangrove Avicennia germinans growing in exceptionally hypersaline conditions (90 ppt), representing some of the most saline vegetated ecosystems on Earth. The findings reported herein can be used to inform species choice in reforestation projects and help improve success rates of coastal wetland restoration projects in semiarid regions.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Avicennia germinans; mangrove reforestation; Rhizophora mangle; Saloum Delta; stomatal conductance; vegetated; coastal ecosystems;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Science and Engineering > Biology
    Item ID: 16134
    Identification Number:
    Depositing User: John Devaney
    Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2022 08:49
    Journal or Publication Title: Restoration Ecology
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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