Research reserves are protected natural areas where scientists conduct environmental and ecological studies. Coordinated monitoring, long-term datasets, experimental infrastructure, and the accumulation of knowledge in research reserves combine to offer tangible benefits to scientists, improve resource conservation, and increase scientific literacy of the public. In estuaries exposed to concentrated human impacts, research reserves can be utilized to address specific coastal management problems. The National Estuarine Research Reserve System exemplifies this approach in two tidal marshes within the San Francisco estuary: China Camp State Park and Rush Ranch Open Space Preserve. Ongoing characterizations of short-term variability and long-term change at these sites are especially important as regional tidal marshes face the imminent threat of accelerating sea-level rise.
Keywords: China Camp; coastal management; monitoring; National Estuarine Research Reserve; Rush Ranch; San Francisco estuary; scientific literacy
Chapter. 3222 words. Illustrated.
Subjects: Animal Pathology and Diseases
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