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Artificial seagrass can support seagrass restoration efforts

Artificial seagrass can support seagrass restoration efforts

A new publication regarding wave-vegetation interaction is out, published in Nature Portfolio’s Scientific Reports.

With this research, we aim to bridge the science behind flow-vegetation interaction and restoration practices for seagrasses, which unfortunately have been increasingly suffering the consequences of man-made climate change and thus disappearing at alarming rates.

Our research shows the effect of prototype mats of artificial seagrass that can be deployed in the field for seagrass restoration purposes. We show how wave orbital velocities around the artificial seagrass can be reduced by up to 16%, while simultaneously reducing wave heights at rates up to 4% per meter. The attenuation of waves and flow from a relatively sparse artificial seagrass bed (400 shoots per square meter) provides hope for innovative restoration practices. Ultimately, we aim to inform both scientists and engineers who want to apply this knowledge to try new approaches toward the resettlement of this precious ecosystem!

Read the full article:

Villanueva, R., Paul, M. & Schlurmann, T. Wave dynamics alteration by discontinuous flexible mats of artificial seagrass can support seagrass restoration efforts. Sci Rep 13, 19418 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-023-46612-z