Tape seagrass, which has the longest leaves among its kind found in Indian waters, is a major carbon sink. A recent study has some useful insights on its flowering and fruiting
Tape seagrass, which is recorded throughout the Indo-Pacific region can grow up to 150 cm. It provides refuge and acts as a feeding area for more than 1,000 species of fish, including this pufferfish. Photo: Vardhan Patankar/WCS-India
The grass can bury carbon in underwater sediments 40 times faster than tropical forests bury it in the soil. This is a rocky outcrop near the Henry Lawrence island in the Andamans and Nicobars. Photo: Vardhan Patankar/WCS-India
A recent study by a team of researchers from WCS-India, Dakshin Foundation and Andaman Nicobar Environment Team has made observations on the flowering and fruiting of tape seagrass. This is the female flower of the grass. Photo: Vardhan Patankar/WCS-India
Researchers counted shoots, fruits, female flowers and the density per square meter was calculated. Observations from the study of fruiting and flowering establish an important reproductive stage in the life-cycle of the species and open avenues for further seagrass research. Photo: Vardhan Patankar/WCS-India
A mixed meadow. The researchers recommend that extensive surveys should be carried out in all potential seagrass meadows of the Andaman & Nicobar Archipelago to understand the phenology of all 11 seagrass species. Photo: Vardhan Patankar/WCS-India
The seagrass ecosystem is threatened by trawl fishing, sand mining, coastal construction, sewage and other pollutants. The study findings can be used to protect and conserve the unique system. Photo: Vardhan Patankar/WCS-India
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