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PLoS One. 2009;4(5):e5600. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0005600. Epub 2009 May 19.

Nutrient enrichment increases mortality of mangroves.

Author information

1
Centre for Marine Studies and School of Biological Science, University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland, Australia. c.lovelock@uq.edu.au

Abstract

Nutrient enrichment of the coastal zone places intense pressure on marine communities. Previous studies have shown that growth of intertidal mangrove forests is accelerated with enhanced nutrient availability. However, nutrient enrichment favours growth of shoots relative to roots, thus enhancing growth rates but increasing vulnerability to environmental stresses that adversely affect plant water relations. Two such stresses are high salinity and low humidity, both of which require greater investment in roots to meet the demands for water by the shoots. Here we present data from a global network of sites that documents enhanced mortality of mangroves with experimental nutrient enrichment at sites where high sediment salinity was coincident with low rainfall and low humidity. Thus the benefits of increased mangrove growth in response to coastal eutrophication is offset by the costs of decreased resilience due to mortality during drought, with mortality increasing with soil water salinity along climatic gradients.

PMID:
19440554
PMCID:
PMC2679148
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0005600
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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