The Laguna Madre of Tamaulipas is one of the most important wetland for the distribution of waterfowl in Mexico. It hosts 15% of the total ducks and geese that arrive to Mexico each winter, including 36% of the continental population of Redheads, that in conjunction with the Laguna Madre of Texas, they host around 80% of the population of this specie. Redheads depend on the availability of seagrasses in the Laguna Madre, specifically of Shoalgrass (Halodule wrightii), its primary source of food during the winter. Other species, such as the Northern Pintail and the American Wigeon also benefit greatly from these seagrasses. However, the status of seagrass communities in the Laguna Madre of Tamaulipas is currently unknown, giving place to several questions about their current distribution, specie composition, salinity conditions, water quality, turbidity, temperature, and the biomass available for waterfowl. These are parameters that could potentially have big changes due to all the anthropogenic impacts that have occurred in this area.
In 1975, a biomass of 413.7 g/m2 was registered for the Laguna Madre of Tamaulipas, while in 1994, DUMAC and the Autonomous University of Tamaulipas (UAT) determined a biomass of 154.4 g/m2, which represents a 63% decrease within a period of 19 years. Today, 23 years later, we will seek to update this information through the development of a Seagrass Monitoring Project in collaboration and coordination with researchers of the Institute of Applied Ecology of the UAT.
This new collaborative relation between the Institute of Applied Ecology and DUMAC will strengthen the development of research projects that will allow the generation of basic information to support the implementation of strategies for the restoration and conservation of the Laguna Madre of Tamaulipas for the benefit of waterfowl population and its habitat.