Creation of Mangrove “Productive Oases”: Community Participation for the Sustainable Utilization of Halophytes

  • Jon Paul Rodríguez
  • Luz Esther Sánchez-Arias
Part of the Tasks for Vegetation Sciences book series (TAVS, volume 43)

Mangroves are especially suitable for the creation of artificial wetlands. They are very tolerant, allowing them to grow under environmental conditions that other plants would not resist. They are highly productive, capable of processing high volumes of nutrients and other chemicals, while supplying organic matter as an input to food webs. They are easy to transport and grow from seeds or seedlings collected in nature. They provide sanctuary for numerous plant and animal species. They supply a variety of goods and services to humans, including erosion control, improvement of water quality, production of food and fibre, ecotourism and education. Mangrove productive oases should preferably be developed in degraded lands near the coast, where water and energy are provided by the tides, and nearby sources of seeds and seedlings are available. We present three case studies that illustrate how artificial mangrove wetlands can process wastewater, produce food and improve the quality of natural ecosystems. Traditional knowledge and community participation were fundamental elements in our case studies, and must be integrated into the design of mangrove productive oases, in order to simultaneously improve human well-being in impoverished areas, and mitigate the degradation of coastal wetlands.

Keywords

oases mangroves restoration wetlands 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media B.V 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jon Paul Rodríguez
    • 1
  • Luz Esther Sánchez-Arias
    • 1
  1. 1.Centro de EcologíaInstituto Venezolano de Investigaciones CientíficasVenezuela

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