Eva R. Hillmann

Establishing a Baseline of Estuarine Submerged Aquatic Vegetation Resources Across Salinity Zones Within Coastal Areas of the Northern Gulf of Mexico

SEAFWA Journal Volume 3, March 2016

Coastal ecosystems are dynamic and productive areas that are vulnerable to effects of global climate change. Despite their potentially limited spatial extent, submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) beds function in coastal ecosystems as foundation species, and perform important ecological services. However, limited understanding of the factors controlling SAV distribution and abundance across multiple salinity zones (fresh, intermediate, brackish, and saline) in the northern Gulf of Mexico restricts the ability of models to accurately predict resource availability. We sampled 384 potential...

Brackish Marsh Zones as a Waterfowl Habitat Resource in Submerged Aquatic Vegetation Beds in the Northern Gulf of Mexico

SEAFWA Journal Volume 3, March 2016

Submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) beds are shallow coastal habitats that are increasingly exposed to the effects of sea-level rise (SLR). In the northern Gulf of Mexico (nGoM), an area especially vulnerable to SLR, the abundance and distribution of SAV food resources (seeds, rhizomes, and tissue) can influence the carrying capacity of coastal marshes to support wintering waterfowl. Despite the known importance of SAV little is known about their distribution across coastal landscapes and salinity zones or how they may be impacted by SLR. We estimated SAV cover and seed biomass in coastal...