Selection of mangrove species to optimise aquaculture based livelihoods and biodiversity in climate smart designed polders of Bangladesh.
Mangrove-Polders aims to enhance shrimp productivity through innovations in land-use planning, water management and planting mangrove trees along the polder canals. The polders in the Ganges-Brahmaputra delta of Bangladesh were constructed polders for rice cultivation but due to salinization caused by reduced sedimentation and climate change related sea-level-rise, farmers progressively replaced rice with shrimp. Yields of shrimp farms are (too) low. Mangrove ecosystems, lost in process, improve water quality, sequester carbon, provide habitat for reproduction of aquatic animals, trap sediments, and contribute to coastal protection. Through its building-with-nature approach Mangrove-Polders aims to positively impact on food security and livelihoods of shrimp farming communities, and on coastal safety.
Partners & Funding
The consortium partners are: Solidaridad, Bangladesh – project leader, Wageningen University & Research (The Netherlands), and Khulna University / Life Science School / Fisheries & Marine Resource Technology Discipline (Bangladesh).
The project is funded by the Dutch Applied Research Funds, and SOLIDARIDAD
Project Research Summary
Mangrove-Polders will implement the following steps:
(1) An inventory of preferred mangrove species will be made with scientists and experts. This list will be reviewed with the farmers, considering their key objectives. (2) The selected mangrove will be planted in redesigned ponds / polders where rice farming is no longer viable. (3) The team will test the impact of decomposing leaves of the selected mangrove species on shrimp and water quality in tanks. (4) On farm the effect on water quality, shrimp performance, sedimentation, and survival and growth of the mangroves will be monitored. (5) The overall economic effect will be analysed through modelling.
Mangrove-Polders aims to implement a process of co-creation combining participatory approaches with the methodologies of participatory R4D. Under guidance of the Solidaridad, the scientists will hold series of workshops with both the farmers from the Producer Groups and the stakeholders of interest. We will especially focus on farmers willing to contribute by transforming part of their ponds along the primary irrigation canals into a mangrove landscape. These workshops will, in addition to the inventory of mangrove knowledge and use, review the intended project impacts, outcomes and pathways, and yield an inventory of important boundary partners for the project.