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Mangrove Tree

Mangroves And Humans

Mangrove forests are commercially important in some places. Lumber can be manufactured from all of the mangrove trees, but the most durable wood is that of Ceriops. Where it is abundant, Rhizophora may be harvested to manufacture lumber or pulp. In some places, mangroves trees are harvested and used to manufacture charcoal. The bark of mangroves is rich in tannins, and has been used for the commercial production of these chemicals, which are utilized to tan animal skins into leather. Mangrove forests are also commonly harvested for local use as firewood.

Ecotourism is a less consumptive use of the man-grove ecosystem. In large part, this recreational use is based on the fact that many species of large, colorful birds can be abundant in mangrove forests and their integrated, open-water wetlands and shores. These include species of herons, ibises, pelicans, gulls, terns, osprey, and shorebirds.

Many parts of the world have mangrove forests under intense pressure from various types of human stressors. This is partly associated with overly intensive harvesting of natural resources from these forests. In addition, many regions of mangrove forests are being lost to various types of coastal developments, which convert these natural ecosystems into agriculture, plantations, tourism developments, or aquaculture facilities, especially for the culturing of shrimp. In some places, mangrove forests are also being degraded through pollution associated with agricultural runoff, sewage dumping from residential areas, and aquatic industrial emissions of various types. Mangrove forests are rapidly being depleted in many regions, and in extensive areas they have virtually disappeared.



Stafford-Deitsch, J. Mangroves. London: Immel, 1994.

Walter, H. Vegetation of the Earth. New York: Springer-Verlag, 1978.

Bill Freedman


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—A geographically extensive ecosystem, usually characterized by its dominant life forms.


—Ecology-based tourism, focused primarily on natural or cultural resources.


—A coastal, tropical, wet forest growing on muddy substrate, and dominated by species of mangrove trees in the family Rhizophoraceae.


—Exposed roots of some marsh plants that are useful in conducting oxygen to the plant's underwater tissues.


—Embryonic root.


—The state of being old.

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Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Macrofauna to MathematicsMangrove Tree - Species Of Mangrove Trees, Ecology Of Mangrove Forest, Mangroves And Humans