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Journal Mangrove

Ethnobiology, socio-economics and management of mangrove forests: A review 2008

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etnobotani mangrove

Bradley B. Waltersa, , , Patrik Rönnbäckb, John M. Kovacsc, Beatrice Cronab, Syed Ainul Hussaind, Ruchi Badolad, Jurgenne H. Primaverae, Edward Barbierf and Farid Dahdouh-Guebasg, h

aGeography & Environment, Mount Allison University, Sackville, NB E4L 1A7, Canada

bSystems Ecology, Stockholm University, S106 91 Stockholm, Sweden

cGeography, Nipissing University, North Bay, ON P1B 8L7, Canada

dWildlife Institute of India, P.O. Box 18, Dehra Dun 248001, Uttarakhand, India

eAquaculture Department, Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center, Tigbauan, IloIlo 5021, Philippines

fEconomics & Finance, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY 82071, USA

gBiocomplexity Research Focus, (Complexité et Dynamique des Systèmes Tropicaux), Département de Biologie des Organismes, Université Libre de Bruxelles – ULB, Campus du Solbosch, CP 169, Avenue Franklin D. Roosevelt 50, B-1050 Bruxelles, Belgium

hBiocomplexity Research Focus c/o Laboratory of Plant Biology and Nature Management, Mangrove Management Group, Vrije Universiteit Brussel – VUB, Pleinlaan 2, B-1050 Brussel, Belgium


There is growing research interest in the ethnobiology, socio-economics and management of mangrove forests. Coastal residents who use mangroves and their resources may have considerable botanical and ecological knowledgeable about these forests. A wide variety of forest products are harvested in mangroves, especially wood for fuel and construction, tannins and medicines. Although there are exceptions, mangrove forest products are typically harvested in a small-scale and selective manner, with harvesting efforts and impacts concentrated in stands that are closer to settlements and easiest to access (by land or by sea). Mangroves support diverse, local fisheries, and also provide critical nursery habitat and marine productivity which support wider commercial fisheries. These forests also provide valuable ecosystem services that benefit coastal communities, including coastal land stabilization and storm protection. The overlapping of marine and terrestrial resources in mangroves creates tenure ambiguities that complicate management and may induce conflict between competing interests. Mangroves have been cut and cleared extensively to make way for brackish water aquaculture and infrastructure development. More attention is now given to managing remaining forests sustainably and to restoring those degraded from past use. Recent advances in remotely sensed, geo-spatial monitoring provide opportunities for researchers and planners to better understand and improve the management of these unique forested wetlands.

Keywords: Mangrove; Anthropogenic disturbance; Human ecology; Non-timber forest product; Economic valuation; Ecosystem service; Forest management



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