Florida Coastal Office Ecotourism – Seagrass Beds PSA


music plays” Seagrass beds are important places in an estuary.
They reduce turbidity by holding the substrate in place and provide vital nursery habitat.
Most of the fishes begin their lives in these seagrasses so they’re critically important. Well the things to know when, when operating
in seagrass beds, be aware of the water depth. Traverse the seagrass bed at a low speed so
as not to cause prop scarring. The prop scar is when a propeller is spinning and it goes
through the seagrass bed, it digs down into the substrate. It physically chops up the
rhizome system of the seagrasses and this is very damaging because there have been surveys
done after the fact that have shown that this damage can perpetuate for years on end. And
not only that, it can sort of lead to a snowballing effect where the grass is impacted and it
moves further and further out. And in some areas where you have multiple instances of
prop scarring, the seagrass is going to be negatively impacted such that the growth may
be, may not be as luxurious as it might be otherwise. And that’s going to have an affect
upon the animals that rely upon the seagrass bed for their food and habitat. “music plays”

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