Mud flat in a mangrove swamp, Indonesia.

Mud flat in a mangrove swamp, Indonesia.

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Credit: GEOFF TOMPKINSON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Mangrove swamp. Coastal mangrove swamp at low tide with exposed mud flats and roots. Mangroves are trees or shrubs that grow in shallow, muddy water along sheltered, tropical or subtropical shorelines and estuaries. They have tangled masses of roots which help to trap mud particles and bind them together. Some mangrove roots, called pneum- atophores, grow upwards to collect oxygen from the air. This is because the mud in which mangroves grow is typically poor in the oxygen needed by the roots. By trapping mud particles, mangrove plants help to prevent coastal erosion. Mangrove swamps are also important habitats for fish, insects and birds. Photographed in Indonesia.

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Keywords: aquatic, coast, environment, geography, indonesia, mangrove, mangrove swamp, mud flats, peg, pencil, pneumatophore, pneumatophores, root, roots, salt water swamp, swamp, water

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