1Chapter 14: Coastal WetlandsCoastal Wetland: vegetated intertidal environmentSalt MarshesMangrovesVegetationDistributionClassificationGlobal Climate ChangeWetlands•Low energy environments Why Study Coastal Wetlands•Coastal wetlands currently make up about 30% of the wetlands in the lower 48 states, or approximately 27 million acres. •Marshes produce biomass measuring nearly 20 tons to the acre, making them four times more productive than the most productive farmland.•An estimated 80 percent of fish caught commercially spend some time in coastal wetlands or are dependent on food chains which can be traced back to these coastal environments Complex Ecosystems•81% of coastal wetlands are in the southeast •Gulf of Mexico region includes 51% •Pacific coast (excluding Alaska and Hawaii) contains less than 2%. •Most coastal wetlands (77%) occur in or adjacent to estuaries.US Wetland StatisticsThe 10 states with the most coastal wetlands: FloridaLouisianaSouth CarolinaTexasNorth CarolinaGeorgiaAlabamaNew JerseyCaliforniaMaine
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