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Modelling connectivity of eelgrass (Zostera marina) in the Kattegat, Denmark, to guide restoration

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterCommunication

Danish coastal waters have experienced a drastic decline in eelgrass Zostera marina coverage during the past century. Around 1900, eelgrass meadows covered about 6700 km2 while the current potential distribution area is only about 1/3 of this. In some areas, the potential distribution area is far from realized, and restoration efforts are needed to assist recovery. In the present study, we aim to identify the connectivity of eelgrass populations as a basis for guiding site selection for restoration. We developed a hydrodynamic model within the FlexSem framework coupled to an Individual-Based model to study eelgrass dispersal in the Kattegat. Floating particles simulated the dispersal of reproductive eelgrass shoots containing seeds during the flowering season July-September. We then used the network analysis to analyze the potential connectivity based on centrality metrics and identified key areas to be considered for restoration. The study demonstrates the potentials of combining hydro-dynamic models and network analysis to support marine conservation and planning, and highlights the importance of collaboration between ecologists, oceanographers and practitioners in this endeavor.
Original languageEnglish
Publication year6 Dec 2021
Publication statusPublished - 6 Dec 2021
Event6th International Marine Connectivity Conference - Paris, France
Duration: 6 Dec 20218 Dec 2021

Conference

Conference6th International Marine Connectivity Conference
CountryFrance
CityParis
Period06/12/202108/12/2021

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ID: 228582837