The influence of wave energy and sediment transport on seagrass distribution

Estuaries and Coasts
By:  and 

Links

Abstract

A coupled hydrodynamic and sediment transport model (Delft3D) was used to simulate the water levels, waves, and currents associated with a seagrass (Zostera marina) landscape along a 4-km stretch of coast in Puget Sound, WA, USA. A hydroacoustic survey of seagrass percent cover and nearshore bathymetry was conducted, and sediment grain size was sampled at 53 locations. Wave energy is a primary factor controlling seagrass distribution at the site, accounting for 73% of the variability in seagrass minimum depth and 86% of the variability in percent cover along the shallow, sandy portions of the coast. A combination of numerical simulations and a conceptual model of the effect of sea-level rise on the cross-shore distribution of seagrass indicates that the area of seagrass habitat may initially increase and that wave dynamics are an important factor to consider in predicting the effect of sea-level rise on seagrass distributions in wave-exposed areas.

Study Area

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title The influence of wave energy and sediment transport on seagrass distribution
Series title Estuaries and Coasts
DOI 10.1007/s12237-011-9435-1
Volume 35
Issue 1
Year Published 2012
Language English
Publisher Springer-Verlag
Contributing office(s) Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center
Description 17 p.
First page 92
Last page 108
Country United States
State Washington
Other Geospatial Puget Sound
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N