Welcome to the Marine Mammal and wildlife Research and Community Development Expedition blog where you can keep up to date with all the happenings and information from Kenya

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Mayhem in the Mangroves!

Today we set off on a survey in the mangroves, looking at tree diversity and density, human disturbance, canopy height and cover. The team consisted of Brendan, Dan, Cathy, Sophie, Lucy and Zeno, all armed with tape measures, clinometers and a love of mud. We spent the next few hours measuring ten meter sections and gathering data on mangrove species. Travel through the mangrove forests here in coastal Kenya was made difficult by knee-high mud which engulfed our shoes and filled our pockets. Everyone was absolutely covered in mangrove muck, but laughing all the same.
Human disturbance was definitely apparent during our survey. We collected data on trees that had been cut down, and how far apart mangrove growth is in this habitat. Work has been steady, having already surveyed 120 meters in 2 days! At the end of the day, as dirty and sweating as we were, everyone was satisfied in a good days work!
Lucy, Brendan, Zeno during the survey

The aim of our mangrove study is to gather data and create awareness on this fragile ecosystem, and the health of the forest. An ever growing human population affects our environment in many ways and before this survey, no research has been done on the mangroves. With enough data and continuous conservation efforts, we hope to implement protective measures to ensure the mangrove forest flourishes for generations to come.