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Mapping changes of mangrove vegetation along the coasts of Oman

Authors: Salim Al-Hatrushi*, Sultan Qaboos University
Topics: Coastal and Marine, Environment, Middle East
Keywords: Mangrove, Mapping, Spatial changes, Coasts of Oman
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Mangroves are intertidal coastal ecosystems that thrive in the tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Because these coastal ecosystems are very important from the ecological point of view, their mapping is important for a proper management of the natural resources in Oman. Mapping of mangroves was performed by means of remote sensing and field verification. Ten satellite images from the Landsat-5 and Landsat-8 satellites were acquired in 1987 and 2017, respectively were used to delineate locations and changes of mangrove patches along the entire coasts of the country using the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) thresholding to extract the surrogate pixels of vegetation. Sediment samples were collected from some mangrove soils for the assessment of carbon content in these ecosystems. Results showed that mangroves occur at fifteen locations in Oman. Although the country overlooks three water bodies, the mangroves are contingent to the Sea of Oman and the Arabian Sea. Some locations experienced diminishing of mangrove forests due to anthropogenic activities, whereas the majority witnessed an increase by the plantation programs. Mangrove sediments have high concentrations of organic carbon, which reflect their potential for carbon sequestering. Plantation of mangrove along the coasts of Oman could help to reduce the impact of the sea surges and waves from the tropical cyclones

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