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Figure from UNEP: These images show a combination of a rocky, hilly headland along with a small river delta and swampy coastal strip. A low-lying wetland area connects the northern and western ocean fronts. An integration of natural and agricultural ecosystems operating prior to the tsunami combined rice cultivation, and fish/shrimp ponds (tambak), alongside natural delta mangrove forests and wetlands. Coastal forests and onshore reefs are also present. The effect of the tsunami is clearly evident. It scoured out the low lying delta land, destroyed fish ponds and removed mangrove cover. Volumes of soil and silt have evidently been carried out to sea expanding the area of the small lake by a factor of approximately 10. There has been removal of the sandy beaches (important in some locations for turtle nesting) and deposition of silt or mud on the reef. Apparently minor effects on the integrity of the rocky vegetated shoreline surrounding the headland are likely due to the resilient nature of the substrata, as well as dense natural vegetation cover and the sloping nature of the shore.

Dr. M (1768 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (, a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

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