Sandy Beaches: An Ecosystem At Risk
June 01 2007 |
by Chad Nelsen
Don't let these graphs intimidate you - they tell a simple story. (Click on graphic to see bigger version)
On beaches without shoreline armoring there are more birds and more kinds of birds.
On beaches with shoreline armoring there are less birds and less kinds of birds.
Birds are a visible indicator of a beach's ecological health. A healthy beach supports a rich set of beach critters that birds like to eat.
This graph is from a recently published paper titled "Sandy Beaches at the Brink". The authors - leading beach ecologists from around the world - are warning that beach ecology is suffering from escalating threats on a global scale.
The beach is alive! Let's keep it that way.