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Free Content Mangroves and shrimp pond culture effluents in Aklan, Panay Is., Central Philippines

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The capacity of a natural mangrove system in Ibajay, Aklan province, central Philippines to process shrimp pond culture effluents was assessed through analysis of mangrove community structure and 24-hr monitoring of water quality parameters (NH3-N, NO3-N, PO4-P, sulfide, and total suspended solids). Results from the latter showed decreased nutrient levels within 6 hrs after daytime draining of effluents into the mangrove stand, but only nitrate reduction was statistically significant. Based on nitrate loss, volume of water drained, mangrove area, and shrimp farming data (e.g., N loss from ponds, feed composition, feeding rate), calculations show that 1.8–5.4 ha of mangroves are required to remove nitrate wastes from 1 ha of shrimp pond. N uptake by the mangrove macroflora was supported by data showing longer nipa palm leaflets and faster mangrove seedling growth in the experimental mangrove receiving effluents compared to a control mangrove, but not from mangrove biomass measurements. These results have significant implications for the Philippine brackishwater pond culture industry to conserve or rehabilitate mangroves as potential pond biofilters, to implement legally mandated 20- and 50-m greenbelts, and to reverse the national 0.5 ha mangrove: 1.0 ha pond ratio.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2007-05-01

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