If you have been to Florida, chances are that you have heard of mangrove trees but you may not know a lot about these types of trees. Below are five facts about mangrove trees that are both educational and interesting.

1. Species of Mangrove

There are more than 50 mangrove species cross the world. In the US, there are three varieties – red, flack and white mangroves are in Florida. They grow along Florida’s vast shorelines and they prevent beach-line and sand erosion during hurricanes and tropical storms. They are able to live in water that’s 10x saltier when compared with the water that other plants can withstand.

2. Wildlife

Wildlife are provided with nesting locations, roosting sites and wildlife and bird protection. The mangroves also give marine and aquatic life with a great food source. A lot of the young fish species go into mangrove’s root system to get away from predators. Turtles also make mangrove’s roots their home, where they can find food and safety.

3. Water filtration

One of the great things about mangroves is that they can filter the water through the root system. The trees are able to easily filter the runoff before that water gets to the ocean. The roots help with trapping debris from uplands. This is what helps with protecting coral reefs and sea life, since they can be destroyed or killed by a lot of sediment. The mangrove trees also help during hurricanes and tropical storms by reducing the damage from the wind to the areas inland, taking a lot of the storm’s brunt. They’re also going to help with lessening wave action as well as preventing storm surges from getting too intense.

4. Roots/Seed Germination

Mangroves helps with ensuring their own survival by letting the seeds to start germination while they’re still attached to the tree before they’re dispersed. This will give the seed a good head start so they can survive. The trees also have roots which extend from water to go in the air. These roots let the tree get oxygen.

5. Fruit

The aboriginal people in Australia enjoy eating the fruit of the white mangrove. The thing about the white mangrove fruit is that it’s toxic if they’re not soaked in the mud for 7 days before they’re eaten. Then the fruit is twice boiled or roasted before it’s eaten. The branches then can be burned in a campfire so that sand flies are repelled.

The next time you go to Florida and see a mangrove tree, think about these facts. Mangroves are truly a fascinating plant.

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