GeoCAS Citizen Science.

Seagrass Mapping

Seagrass Mapping

Welcome to seagrass mapping in the Virgin Islands.

There four species of seagrass in the Virgin Islands. Three of them are native and important to the ecology of sand and mud flats where they are found. Thalassia testudinum , or turtle grass, are perennial with long strap like leaves and a thick fleshy underground root stock. Syringodium filiforme , or manatee grass, is a favorite food of sea turtles. It has thin needle like leaves with underground roots. Halodule wrightii is a rare straplike seagrass found in shallow water. It is similar to turtle grass in appearance and growth habits. Halophila stipulacea is a newly arrived invasive seagrass that colonizes sand flats and disturbed areas where it grows rapidly by thin rhizomes on top of the sediment that break easily. It spreads through fragmentation.

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