You don’t have to go very far in FNQ to find mangroves. Queensland is home to almost half of Australia’s mangrove areas, and a fair slice of that is here in far north Queensland. They’re not the gentlest of places – stifling hot, teeming with mozzies and sandflies, and there’s a good chance that slide mark in the mud was made by a crocodile who’s had an eye on you for a while now.
Mangroves are not everyone’s cup of tea – but I love them. Great for a get away from it all wander, and if you go with some info on just how these plants live in such harsh conditions, it’s a fascinating journey.
Mangroves are various types of trees up to medium height, and shrubs, that grow along our coasts in saline sediment habitats. The plants live between the high and low tide lines, where trees ought not flourish. But these species have adapted to a tough environment and play a really important role in the life of our sea creatures. About 70 per cent of the fish and seafood we eat uses mangroves for breeding or shelter.
LISTEN Click on the red arrow to hear ABC Far North wildlife correspondent Martin Cohen explain why mangroves exist, how they work and why they’re important.