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Animals of the Disappearing Mangroves

As mangrove forests shrink worldwide, a menagerie of specially adapted animals that depend on them are at risk, too

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YELLOW-SHOULDERED BLACKBIRD

This endangered blackbird ( Agelaius xanthomus ) doesn't live exclusively in Puerto Rico's mangrove forests—it can also make a home in pastures and seashore cliffs. But because its other habitat has suffered heavy losses, largely due to expanding agriculture and development , it has become more dependent on the mangrove retreats.....[ More ]

MADAGASCAR TEAL

Madagascar teals, also called Bernier's Teal ( Anas bernieri ) live only in mangrove forests along the west coast of this Indian Ocean island nation. The endangered ducks , which measure about 16 to 18 inches (40 to 45 centimeters) long, feed on invertebrates in the brackish waters and make their nests in the mangrove trees.....[ More ]

RED-VENTED COCKATOO

Also known as the red-vented cockatoo (owing to its red under-tail feathers), the Cacatua Haematuropygia is native to the Philippine archipelago. Trapping the rare birds for illegal trade as pets —along with habitat loss—has led to its current IUCN status of "critically endangered".....[ More ]

PROBOSCIS MONKEY

Although most mangrove residents are birds and reptiles, some mammals also make their home in the tangled trees, including bats and even a sloth. The distinctive proboscis monkey ( Nasalis larvatus ) is one of six threatened mammals that are restricted to mangrove habitats.....[ More ]

MANGROVE TERRAPIN

The mangrove terrapin ( Malaclemys terrapin ), aka the diamondback terrapin , is one of the only turtle species that can survive in brackish water and is a common coastal resident along the East Coast.....[ More ]

MANGROVES

Aside from being a unique home for many animals, mangroves serve an important function for people, as well. Like other coastal buffers, they help shield land from storms and high seas. Recognizing the value of the disappearing groves, officials in Jakarta, Indonesia, recently promised to restore 790 acres (320 hectares) of the forests along the city's northern coast, The Jakarta Post reported.....[ More ]

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