Building resilience through mangrove
restoration in the Limpopo estuary

Community members restore mangrove hydrological channel

This project, implemented by CDS-ZC, aims to contribute to increased resilience of the mangrove-livelihoods ‘socio-ecological system’ in the Limpopo estuary (Mahielene and Zongoene-Sede communities) through restoring and maintaining biodiversity and hydrological processes and capacity development so as to provide natural resources and ecosystem services that sustain both local people and mangrove ecosystems. This will also support resilience in terms of climate change impacts.

The mangroves, which lie at the estuary of the Limpopo River near Xai-Xai in Mozambique, complete AWARD’s the basin-wide approach. However, they are under threat from extreme events (floods and droughts), siltation, overexploitation and salt-water intrusion. Although they offer important ecological infrastructure and services to people and biota, the floods of 2000 and again 2012 reduced their extent substantially, particularly on the northern bank. Consequently, large parts of the 900 ha extent of mangroves died with a loss of mangrove ecosystem nursery function, fish production, biodiversity, which, in turn, impacted on local livelihoods.

CDS staff explain successes at the mangrove nursery

The project has:

  • Completed hydrological restoration;
  • Involved schools and contributed to school curricula by integrating thematic content on mangrove ecology and value and climate change;
  • Maintained and expanded the seedling nursery;
  • Esablished Natural Resource Management (NRM) Committees; and
  • Supported other mangrove rehabilitation projects in Maputo and Inhambane.