The litter fall of two Bruguiera sexangula communities at Dongzhai Harbour of Hainan Island was studied for 4 years, from 1984 to 1987. The mean litter production amounted to 12.55 ± 1.62 Mg⋅ha–1⋅yr–1 and 11.04 ± 0.18
Mg⋅ha–1⋅yr–1 (dry matter) respectively in two communities, artificial and natural forest. The monthly production fluctuated not only with the monthly mean air temperature but also with the typhoon and strong wind. The decomposition rate of leaf litter
of B. sexangula was measured seasonally from spring to winter in 1984 and 1985 at a mangrove stand. The results showed that the leaf litter decomposition half-times in the four seasons were 21, 20, 26 and 45 days respectively, and that marine animals played an important role in the
decomposition process. By providing organic detritus a great deal of mangrove litter is incorporated rapidly into estuarine and coastal ecosystems. Thus mangroves are significant contributors to the food chains of these ecosystems.
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