Essay on Belize Barrier Reef Platform

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While the human population continues to grow so does the need for land to contain the growth. In man’s attempt to fulfill this need we find that we are encroaching on lands used for diverse wildlife and plant-life. The problem comes from the fact that when man moves into these new areas he usually takes over and in the process damages or destroys ecosystems that were in place. This loss of ecosystems equates to the loss of animal species and also plant species. This is happening in our world at an alarming rate. One issue that should be sending up a big red flag is that no one knows how the loss of these plants and animals is going to affect our planet. Luckily there are groups established such as the World Heritage Group which work to …show more content…
These are broken down into three distinct areas. They are the Mangrove forest which is made up of three major types of mangrove trees; the Buttonwood, the Red mangrove and the White mangrove. Next there is the Littoral forest. There are four types of trees which make up the Littoral forests and they are the Ziricote Cordia sevestena, the Teabox Myrica cerifera, the Gumbo Limbo Bursera simaruba and the Coco Plum Chrysobalanus icaco. Last, the Littoral forests are fringed by various shrubs such as the Tournefortia ganaphalodes, the Suriana maritime and the Borrichia arborescens. There is also the Coconut tree Cocos nucifera and the Sea Grape Coccoloba uvifera. Other types of vegetation found in this area include; Herbaceous – marsh and swamp, Rushes, Sedges, Calabash Amphitecna breedlovei, Bullet Tree Bucida buceras, Jacquinia aurantiaca, Grass savannas, A. breedlovei, Logwood Haematozylon campechianum and Poison Wood Cameraria latifolia. Some of these species of vegetation are found no where else in the world but here. All of these are land flora. There are also a total of 247 taxa of marine flora. This is made up mainly of large sea grass beds which contain Turtle sea grass Thalassia testudinum and Manatee sea grass Syringodium filiforme. Algal diversity is usually high in this habitat also and consist of; Halimeda incrassate, Rhipocephalus phoenix, Udotea flabellum, Sargassum species and Red algae genus Laurencia. (www.eoearth.org)

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