The Ecology of Seagrass Meadows of the West Coast of Florida: A Community Profile (1989)

This report, covering the seagrass community of the Florida Gulf of Mexico coastline from south of Tampa Bay to Pensacola, was published by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1989.

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THE ECOLOGY OF THE SEAGRASS MEADOWS OF THE WEST COAST OF FLORIDA: A COMMUNITY PROFILE

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Biological Report 85 (7.25). 155pp.

Joseph C. Zieman
Rita T. Zieman
Department of Environmental Sciences
University of Virginia
Charlottesville, VA 22903

Project Officer
Edward Pendleton
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
National Wetlands Research Center
1010 Gause Boulevard

Slidell, LA 70458

PREFACE
Seagrass beds have come to be known as extremely productive and valuable coastal wetland resources. They are critical nursery areas for a number of fish, shrimp, and crab species and support the adults of these and other species that forage around seagrass beds, preying on the rich and varied fauna that occur in these habitats. Seagrass beds support several endangered and threatened species, including sea turtles and manatees, along the west coast of Florida, the geographic area covered in this profile.

For these reasons and others, seagrass beds or meadows have been the topic of several of the reports in this community profile series. This report, covering the seagrass community of the Florida Gulf of Mexico coastline from south of Tampa Bay to Pensacola, is the fifth community profile to deal with submerged aquatic vegetation beds; others in the series have synthesized ecologic data on seagrasses of south Florida, eelgrass beds in the Pacific Northwest and along the Atlantic coast, and kelp forests of the central California coastline.



FWC Facts:
Seagrasses stabilize the sea bottom with their roots and rhizomes (underground stems) in much the same way that land grasses retard soil erosion.

Learn More at AskFWC