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More protection to sea grass needed for better marine habitats

More protection to sea grass needed for better marine habitats

Experts are demanding more protection to the sea grasses. In the marine ecosystems, sea grasses are breeding ground for small fish. These fishes are at the base of the marine energy pyramids. The researchers were tracking the growth of sea-grass meadows in the North Wales coast region and they found that many of them have been destroyed due to shipping channels. 

The boat equipment like anchors, vehicles and underwater tools have destroyed several patches of the sea grass. Many fish species have been dead due to lack of availability of the food. The situation becomes worse during the low tide and threatening nutrient flow in the system. The number of fish is less where the patches of sea-grass are diluted. The detailed report has been published in the journal PeerJ. 

Swansea University researchers have went one step ahead and analysed both high and low covered sea-grass area from 28 hectare patch underwater. The comparative data has been very helpful to reach the conclusion. These underwater meadows consists of many flowering plants on which fish survive. Fish samples from whole area were studied. Fish species and invertebrates were three times less in case of lower grass cover. 

Common marine animals like shrimp, prawns,  juvenile plaice and juvinile cod were almost absent in low cover areas of sea grass. As of now the European Habitats Directive exclusively protect the sea-grass in the region as special conservation site. But protection is not helpful enough to stop the degradation of ecosystem. Lack of financial resources for conservation program is one of the many reasons. 

 

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