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All About Mangroves in the UAE PDF Print E-mail

All About Mangroves in the UAE

These unique marine eco systems, mangrove forests, cover thousands of hectares along the UAE coastline and form an important and integral part of the coastal eco system in this country. The most common species in the UAE is avicennia marina or grey mangrove.  Within the UAE there are approx 3000 hectares of mangrove forest (of which 2300 hectares are found in Abu Dhabi).


Mangroves provide a great habitat/home and safe breeding ground for some fish species, turtles and even commercially significant shrimp, snapper, grunt fish & sea bream and of course they offer a safe haven for birds nesting, migrating & egg lying.  Mangrove forests are found in intertidal areas and are important in the prevention of coastline erosion caused by wave action and ocean currents.  They are also a rich source of food and fuel as the wood was used historically for constructing homes and ships due to its hardness and high resistance to rot and termites.


White Heron in the Mangroves

The Eastern Mangrove Lagoon is the closest mangrove forest in Abu Dhabi City and popular for sea paddlers to visit.  It’s referred to as the Eastern Mangrove Lagoon National Park.  It will be the first of five national parks identified in Plan Abu Dhabi 2030.  Other areas include: Abu Abyadh, Al Aryam and the Al Dhabeia islands of Abu Dhabi.  

The mangroves in UAE are steadily increasing both in area and in size and it is the community and leaders of this country who will need to keep them protected from new developments and urban expansion.

Mangrove forests are integral to the preservation of the UAE coastline; it is also under constant threat.  These threats include coastal development, pollution, sedimentation, changes in tidal flow and human impacted activities.  

As divers and marine enthusiasts we also have a responsibility to preserve & protect the mangroves by promoting awareness and ensuring our activities remain as low impact to the surrounding environment as possible.


Mangrove Sunset



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