Seascape ecology has been widely applied to seagrass meadows. However, seagrass meadows have been usually studied on a single spatial scale and monitored over a single driver of heterogeneity, with few assessments on the seascape structural evolution. All this creates gaps between the scientific data provided and those required by environmental managers in charge of seagrass conservation.
This study developed a new multidisciplinary approach based on the coupling of mapping techniques, particle flux, and biometric investigations in a Mediterranean Bay (Calvi Bay, Corsica), to assess the structural changes of Posidonia oceanica meadows subject to disturbances.
The results showed the dichotomous spatial evolution of natural and anchoring patches within the P. oceanica seascape and their disparities in terms of particle trapping, together leading to contrasted dynamics. It is highlighted that the smallest anchoring patch will take about 27 years to be recolonized while the biggest 60 years.
The authors suggest the utility of this new method to study the evolution of seagrass meadows at a large spatial scale.
Abadie et al. (2019) Structural changes of seagrass seascapes driven by natural and anthropogenic factors: A multidisciplinary approach. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 7:190.