The Ferrite Mangrove-Swamp

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ThatAlex
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The Ferrite Mangrove-Swamp

Post: # 15215Post ThatAlex »

The Swamp in Ferrite has, in the recent years, gone through a period of diversification. There is no single cause for this, but the effects of it are not only interesting, but very beneficial for the local ecosystem.

Being directly connected to the Ocean, the swamp near Ferrite is very salty. Normally this would not permit trees to grow, but the Mangrove has developed many adaptations to deal with this environment, and in doing so it creates a strange and unique habitat.
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The way these trees deal with the salty water differs. Some, such as the red mangrove, will push salt into leaves, which will then change color and fall off. Not only does this allow the tree to live in sea water, but it also provides a food source for shelled Pokémon, especially the Krabby family. Many of them will lie in wait next to trees and once a leaf falls, scramble to grab it. If you see a fallen leaf that has yet to be eaten, you can make yourself a friend by looking for a hungry Krabby or Clauncher!
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Life here is dominated by the tides, the rising and lowering of water presenting both challenges and opportunities. Some Mangroves have little valves on their roots that only open when the water lowers, allowing them to absorb oxygen through those valves. The soil in this swamp is very anoxic, and as such many adaptations exist to deal with the lack of oxygen, from those valves to aerial roots that look like spikes.
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However, this soil holds more secrets. Mostly in the form of dead plant material. A lot of biomass can be stored in the thick mud, unable to quickly decompose, and as such these ecosystems can trap vast amounts of Carbon in the soil. By taking samples from the soil, many scientists can accurately map things like amount of stored carbon, speed of decomposition, or shifts in sediment runoff, making these places invaluable for researchers.

But not only scientists appreciate the Mangrove Swamps. They are in fact incredibly helpful, as they protect the shoreline from storms and erosion, but also help filter the water flowing into the ocean, and trapping some of the sediment, allowing the ocean next to a Mangrove swamp to thrive into beds of seaweed or beautiful Coral Reefs.
These adjacent ecosystems use the Swamp for another purpose. The thick and hard to navigate roots of the mangroves make it an ideal place to hide from predators, and few other aquatic ecosystem can boast such a high number of young Pokémon. The roots offer perfect places for Nurseries, or for migrating Pokémon to take a breather from the open sea.
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However, not all is calm in here, and when the tide lowers, many Pokémon adapted for a semi aquatic lifestyle will use the opportunity to both hunt or hide. Stunfisk are a common sight, simply waiting in ambush near a puddle so they can stay moist. The same goes for Palpitoad and Mudkip, but even Whishcash will use the puddles to rest up and await the rising water again.
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But it does not always have to be a game of predator and prey. Many Pokémon will cluster together to simply stay wet, and use their number advantage to stay safe. Goomy and Poliwag will often display this behavior, but even in the water, the Binacle, which always thrive due to the nutrient rich sediment, and Dwebble will stick together.
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This ecosystem is a beautiful one, and as it changes throughout the day, one can see the tides bringing all kinds of new life to the surface. We must make sure to protect it, as they are vital for the biodiversity of adjacent ecosystems, as well as protecting our shorelines from all mater of danger. Mangroves are very slow to grow, as the oxygen-poor soil and constant tides make it hard for seeds to take root. As such, conservation is better than re-planting for these forests.

If you visit, make sure to not disturb the fragile woodland that allows many of the Pokémon here to thrive, and if you find a hungry Krabby, why not give them a leaf as a gift!
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