Forests inhabit the edge of tropical seas. As cogently noted by Alfred Russel Wallace during his equatorial travels, mangrove forests are crucial occupiers of the boundary between land and sea, being key ecosystems along many tropical and subtropical coastlines. Mangrove forests are true ecotones, being not just transitional in nature, having some elements of terrestrial and marine ecosystems, but having ecological characteristics all their own.
Mangrove forests are architecturally simple, usually harboring few tree species and lacking an understory of ferns and shrubs, compared with tropical terrestrial forests. Despite their apparent simplicity, however, the standing biomass of mangrove forests can be immense, especially in equatorial regions, rivalling the biomass of many tropical rainforests.
KeywordsBiomass Entropy Phosphorus Dioxide Attenuation
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