Mangrove forests, seagrass beds and coral reefs, are located in areas of transition between the land and water, and form important physical, biological and biogeochemical interactions. They are inhabited by a variety of aquatic, amphibious and terrestrial life, which constantly interact through the spatial overlap and natural variability of the ecosystems. The investigation of these system's biology and ecology is urgently needed due to the increases in human populations along tropical coasts, accelerated global climate change and rising sea levels.
Additionally, coastal ecosystems are threatened by inland human activities, such as industry and agriculture, which can lead to the runoff of industrial pollutants and pesticides to the coastal zone. Land clearing from urban development can result in increased suspended matter input and alteration of nutrient loads, which interferes with the hydrology of the rivers and damages many coastal ecosystems. At present, we are already observing a decline of coral reefs and mangroves, including the renewable resources that they provide.
Coral Reef Ecology