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RESTORING HABITATS TO THEIR ORIGINAL HEALTHY STATE- HABITAT RESTORATION DAY IS FEBRUARY 22!
Habitat restoration day celebrates the work being done around the world to help restore areas back to their natural native state. This includes cleaning up hindering items such as trash, pollutants, and invasive plant species. Native plants are then planted to help give these areas a start in growing back to where they used to be. This is important for the ecosystem as a whole. When a habitat disappears or changes so does its inhabitants and ecological structures.
There are many projects around the world that are working towards restoring natural habitats. ResearchWild! has recently started working on a domestic and international mangrove initiative.
Domestically, ResearchWild works with local universities that have created a gulf coast replanting of mangrove trees as well as working with local community conservation groups in cleaning up local waterways. This program helps with gulf coast restoration in Louisiana where students and volunteers remove invasive vegetation such as several vine species, water hyacinth, Giant Salvinia, and Chinese privet. Through this we are also able to spread awareness of invasive animal species such as wild hogs and Nutria. These wildlife species, along with human impact of historical cypress logging, destroyed the marsh habitats by killing and uprooting natural cypress trees and mangroves forests that made up the separation of ocean, fresh water ways and land. Over time the killing of this important vegetation has caused the death of more native vegetation and has caused land loss due to salt water entering areas it has never been before and destroying habitat for native animal species such as the waterfowl, wading birds, muskrats, sea turtles, manatees, whooping cranes and peregrine falcons.
Internationally, Researchwild! has connected with projects in Indonesia that are focusing on restoring natural mangroves that have been decimated and destroyed by agriculture, aquaculture, tourism, urban development and over-exploitation. ResearchWild! partners at Ujung Kulon National Park have facilitated community empowerment programs centered around sustainable use of the wild mangroves. This includes education for local people on how to work with the mangroves and not to disregard them, so that they remain stable as they are a crucial part of their ecosystem.
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