We have been collecting Mud from many types of mangrove stands during the last 8 years. The mud from many different Mangrove sites is populated with organisms that add to the genetic bank. We have been using Mud Filters for over 30 years, and we have collected many organisms that bring MUD to LIFE!
Sally Jo and Eddie have finally started to produce flowering Mangroves here in Idaho. Eddie has been growing his trees in fresh water for the last 4 years, and they are thriving! Sally Jo's trees have been in an aragocrete rock for over 5 years, and they are now old enough to produce seeds.
Mangroves are fun to grow and the mud they grow in produces many filter species. I now use Mangroves to filter the water in my 300 gallon Acropora reef.
We are currently collecting as many filter organisms as possible to use to inoculate Mud filters with life. This approach goes back to our firm believe in the DIVERSITY = STABILITY rule of Biology and Economics.
YOUR MUD FILTER WORK IS THE INTRODUCTION OF MUD ORGANISMS
A teaspoon of mud from an Australian mangrove stand contains more than 10 billion bacteria. These densities are among the highest to be found in marine mud anywhere in the world and are an indication of the immensely high productivity of this coastal forest habitat. We have added new mud collections from two parts of Mexico, Hawaii, and Florida. Each of these collections have added to the population of filter organisms in our systems.
MANGROVES A NATURAL MODELThe Mangrove ecosystem traps and cycles various organic materials, chemical elements, and important nutrients. Dissolved substances are used by plankton, bacteria,and fungi. This material, in nature, is deposited over the seabed. Here bacteria densities are almost as high as those in the mangrove mud and they do much the same job, breaking down the litter to be consumed by botom-living fauna.
Mangrove roots act not only as support and physical traps but provide attachment surfaces for various marine organisms. Sponges are very common in these areas. Many of these attached organisms filter water through their bodies and, in turn, trap and cycle nutrients.
MANGROVES - HOW DO THEY LIVE IN SALTWATER?Do mangroves have to live in saltwater ? NO. Some species have been kept in greenhouses where they grew and flowered regularly when given only fresh water. However best growth occurs where the plants live in brackish sea water. So how do mangroves thrive in an environment which would kill most other plants'.' The first way many mangroves cope is to stop much of the salt from entering at all by filtering it out at root level. Some species can stop more than 90 per cent of salt in sea water. The leaves of many mangroves have special salt glands which are among the most active salt-secreting systems known.
TO GROW MANY OF OUR MANGROVES
This Mangrove is probably the most well-known. It typically grows along the water's edge. The red mangrove is easily identified by its tangled, reddish roots called "prop roots." These roots have earned mangroves the title, "walking trees." The mangrove appears to be standing or walking on the surface of the water.
Members of the Rhizophoraceae family (Rhizophora, Bruguiera and Ceriops species have an intriguing method for successfully reproducing themselves. The fertilised seeds do not drop from the plants but begin to germinate, growing out from the base of the fruits to form long spear-shaped stems and roots, called propagules. They may grow in place, attached to the parent tree, for one to three years, reaching lengths of up to one metre, before breaking off from the fruit and falling into the water.
The production of live seedlings (known as vivipary) is very rare in plants other than mangroves and a few seagrass species and the reason for it is unclear. It is possible that the well-developed seedling has a greater chance of surviving, once it has taken root, in a situation where it is likely to be battered by water-bourne objects.
This Red Mangrove is growning many complex roots in the filter substrate. The water quality is higher than when Tim used large skimmers. The sps coral growth is very good. The polyp extention is better than before.
FUTURE RESEARCHNumerous medicines are derived from mangroves. Skin disorders and sores, including leprosy, may be treated with ashes or bark infusions of certain species. Headaches, rheumatism, snakebites, boils, ulcers, diarrhoea, haemorrhages...and many more conditions are traditionally treated with mangrove plants.
It was 02:00 in the morning and a light rain had just stopped falling. The gravel road was wet as I started to climb down the house size boulders that made up the harbor where the shrimp boats were docked. Sally Jo was sitting in the Jeep with the doors locked, and I planned on only going into the mud flats as far as I could stay in sight of the Jeep.
It was an odd seeing the giant shrimp boats lying over on their side in the mud because earlier they had been floating in 20 ft. of water. I had chosen this location for collecting mud because I had noticed a thick layer of fine silt as the tide started to go out earlier. I had supposed that the silt and mud would be particularly rich in this location because they had been cleaning fish and shrimp and dumping the remains in this man made harbor for fifty years.
I had put on a brand new pair of tight socks and I double-checked to make sure I had strapped my reef shoes on extra tight before I started wading into the thick sticky mud.
My destination that rainy night was the place just below the fishing pier that I had seen earlier. I was certain that the mud would be particularly rich right there because on this moonless night the tide was at its lowest and I hope that mud would be exposed that would be underwater over three hundred and sixty nights a year.
With my goal in mind at I didn't mind trudging through the 1 ft. thick sticky mud until I happened to turn around to make sure I could still see the Jeep. I was startled and somewhat unnerved by the sight that I saw. Trailing back behind me and getting lighter as they headed toward the shore were my footprints glowing in the dark with phosphorescent algae and bacteria. That was not particularly upsetting until I looked at my legs and noticed that the mud looked like fluorescent glowing green blood dripping onto my now black socks.
It was 03:00 in the morning now it was really raining. I was cold, and I decided that this was the perfect place to collect mud and head back for the Jeep as fast as possible.
Watch for PART#2 - Hot Springs Mud Hunt
The Geothermal Aquaculture Research Foundation, Inc. is a non-profit organization dependent on sales of quality products and our special Annual Events to support our eduacation programs. These projects sustain our service programs and ongoing research we provide to our Community and the World.We are an Idaho Non Profit Organization dedicated to advancing the knowledge of reef keeping. Our live rock aquaculture research has produced many new techniques for sustaining marine life and propagating corals. We are currently growing many species of sps corals, mushrooms, etc. The Foundation is building a genetic bank in Idaho with collections from around the World. We specialize in reef janitors, and have shared this research with many people who need to control algae in land-based live rock aquaculture tanks.
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