LGU Research Collaboration Helps Landowners Support Ecosystem and Reduce Erosion

A study funded by the Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium into salt marsh restoration sees small, private landowners as crucial in protecting the economic and environmental wellbeing of the country’s coastlines. A team of researchers from Mississippi State University, the University of South Alabama, Dauphin Island Sea Lab, the University of Connecticut, The Nature Conservancy and the Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve collaborated to investigate how restoration can be most effective along the Gulf Coast.

Salt marshes are a vital natural resource acting to filter pollutants from runoff before they enter the sea and also help prevent erosion. They provide a habitat for animals and organisms on which commercially important seafood such as shrimp and fish are reliant.

Coastal hard management technologies such as sea wall construction are often favoured and result in reducing these salt marsh areas. However, the study sees soft management practices as proving the longer term and more sustainable option.

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