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Hydrology and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Short summary
Restoration of intertidal wetlands such as mangroves and saltmarshes requires accurate local data on tidal flooding and current velocities. We present the application of a low-cost open source dip-current meter, the Mini Buoy, to monitor inundation and tidal currents in intertidal environments. This tool can be directly applied in hydrological site suitability assessments prior to mangrove restoration with an associated online tool, built with R shiny, and a detailed handbook.
Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2020-574
https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-2020-574

  04 Dec 2020

04 Dec 2020

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal HESS.

Monitoring tidal hydrology in coastal wetlands with the Mini Buoy: applications for mangrove restoration

Thorsten Balke1, Alejandra Vovides1, Christian Schwarz2, Gail L. Chmura3, Cai Ladd1, and Mohammad Basyuni4 Thorsten Balke et al.
  • 1School of Geographical and Earth Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, G128QQ, United Kingdom
  • 2School of Marine Science and Policy, University of Delaware, Lewes, 19958 DE, United States
  • 3Department of Geography, Mc Gill University, Montreal, QX H3A 0B9, Canada
  • 4Department of Forestry, Faculty of Forestry, Universitas Sumatera Utara, Medan 20155, Indonesia

Abstract. Acquiring in-situ data of tidal flooding is key for the successful restoration planning of intertidal wetlands such as salt marshes and mangroves. However, monitoring spatially explicit inundation time series and tidal currents can be costly and technically challenging. With the increasing availability of low-cost sensors and data loggers, customized solutions can now be designed to monitor intertidal hydrodynamics with direct applications for restoration and management.

In this study, we present the design, calibration, and application of the Mini Buoy, a low-cost bottom-mounted float containing an acceleration data logger for monitoring tidal inundation characteristics and current velocities derived from single-axis equilibrium acceleration (i.e. logger tilt).

The acceleration output of the Mini Buoys was calibrated against water-level and current velocity data in the hypertidal Bay of Fundy, Canada, and in a tidally reconnected former aquaculture pond complex in North Sumatra, Indonesia. Key parameters, such as submersion time and current velocities during submergence can be determined over several months using the Mini Buoy. An open-source application was developed to generate ecologically meaningful hydrological information from the Mini Buoy data for mangrove restoration planning. We present this specific SE Asian mangrove restoration application alongside a flexible concept design for the Mini Buoy to be customized for research and management of intertidal wetlands worldwide.

Thorsten Balke et al.

 
Status: open (until 29 Jan 2021)
Status: open (until 29 Jan 2021)
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Thorsten Balke et al.

Data sets

Online data repository and animations Balke, T., Vovides, A., Schwarz, C., Chmura, G. L., Ladd, C., and Basyuni, M. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4244642

Model code and software

Github R shiny app code and Mini Buoy handbook Balke, T., Vovides, A., Schwarz C., Chmura, G. L., Ladd, C., and Basyuni, M. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4304146

Thorsten Balke et al.

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Short summary
Restoration of intertidal wetlands such as mangroves and saltmarshes requires accurate local data on tidal flooding and current velocities. We present the application of a low-cost open source dip-current meter, the Mini Buoy, to monitor inundation and tidal currents in intertidal environments. This tool can be directly applied in hydrological site suitability assessments prior to mangrove restoration with an associated online tool, built with R shiny, and a detailed handbook.
Citation