Monitoring tidal hydrology in coastal wetlands with the Mini Buoy: applications for mangrove restoration

Balke, T. , Vovides, A. , Schwarz, C., Chmura, G. L., Ladd, C. and Basyuni, M. (2021) Monitoring tidal hydrology in coastal wetlands with the Mini Buoy: applications for mangrove restoration. Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 25, pp. 1229-1244. (doi: 10.5194/hess-25-1229-2021)

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Acquiring in situ data of tidal flooding is key for the successful restoration planning of intertidal wetlands such as salt marshes and mangroves. However, monitoring spatially explicit inundation time series and tidal currents can be costly and technically challenging. With the increasing availability of low-cost sensors and data loggers, customized solutions can now be designed to monitor intertidal hydrodynamics with direct applications for restoration and management. In this study, we present the design, calibration, and application of the “Mini Buoy”, a low-cost underwater float containing an acceleration data logger for monitoring tidal inundation characteristics and current velocities derived from single-axis equilibrium acceleration (i.e. logger tilt). The acceleration output of the Mini Buoys was calibrated against water-level and current-velocity data in the hypertidal Bay of Fundy, Canada, and in a tidally reconnected former aquaculture pond complex in North Sumatra, Indonesia. Key parameters, such as submersion time and current velocities during submergence, can be determined over several months using the Mini Buoy. An open-source application was developed to generate ecologically meaningful hydrological information from the Mini Buoy data for mangrove restoration planning. We present this specific SE Asian mangrove restoration application alongside a flexible concept design for the Mini Buoy to be customized for research and management of intertidal wetlands worldwide.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ladd, Dr Cai and Vovides, Dr Alejandra and Balke, Dr Thorsten
Authors: Balke, T., Vovides, A., Schwarz, C., Chmura, G. L., Ladd, C., and Basyuni, M.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
Journal Name:Hydrology and Earth System Sciences
Publisher:Copernicus Publications
ISSN (Online):1607-7938
Published Online:11 March 2021
Copyright Holders:Copyright © Author(s) 2021
First Published:First published in Hydrology and Earth System Sciences 25:1229-1244
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons license

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
301790MOnitoring Mangrove ExteNT & Services (MOMENTS): What is controlling Tipping Points?Thorsten BalkeNatural Environment Research Council (NERC)NE/P014127/1GES - Geography