Business as usual leads to underperformance in coastal restoration


Book Section

© Oxford University Press. This chapter shows that coastal wetland projects are underperforming because of confirmation bias. Despite two decades of work showing that top-down control can be essential to marsh restoration, the potential role of top predators is typically ignored by those responsible for restoring or maintaining marshes. Similarly ignored are experiments that indicate positive interaction between marsh plants and can enhance the pace and success of restoration. By planting marsh plants at higher densities, marsh restoration success can double, and seagrass restoration can succeed in the face of increasing drought and eutrophication effects. Continued failure to integrate top-down control and facilitative species interactions into coastal restoration designs will result in widespread underperformance of wetland conservation projects and unrealized generation of important ecosystem services.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Silliman, BR; Hughes, BB; Zhang, YS; He, Q

Published Date

  • January 1, 2017

Book Title

  • Effective Conservation Science: Data Not Dogma

Start / End Page

  • 173 - 178

International Standard Book Number 13 (ISBN-13)

  • 9780198808978

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1093/oso/9780198808978.003.0027

Citation Source

  • Scopus