Mangroves are coastal wetland ecosystems in the upper intertidal area. Salt-tolerant mangrove vegetation dwells on fine substrates in sheltered, low-energy coastal environments such as estuaries and lagoons. At the interface between land and sea, mangroves provide a plethora of regulating, habitat and provisioning services. This thesis focusses on their regulating services: sediment trapping and wave attenuation, providing coastal stabilization and safety. These processes are the result of characteristic bio-physical interactions between mangrove vegetation, hydrodynamics and sediment dynamics in the intertidal. Understanding the mechanisms determining the contribution of mangroves to coastal safety is indispensable to pinpoint the effects of widespread mangrove losses. This understanding starts with a sound knowledge of the short-term bio-physical interactions in mangroves. In this thesis, spatially explicit observations of flow routing, sediment deposition and wave attenuation in coastal mangroves are linked to gradients in elevation and vegetation. These observational data are collected at three different field sites along the Thai Andaman coast. In addition, a numerical model of one of the study sites is set up in Delft3D. This model is used to study the sensitivity of established tidal-scale flow routing and deposition patterns in mangroves to instantaneous environmental changes.
|Award date||25 Apr 2014|
|Place of Publication||Enschede|
|Publication status||Published - 25 Apr 2014|