Salt marshes are productive estuarine ecosystems that cling to Florida coastlines where temperatures dip below freezing. They filter water, stabilize the coasts, reduce storm surge, and house commercially important species like blue crab and juvenile mullet and shrimp. There is a diversity of different species within a marsh. And while marsh cordgrass seems uniform, Dr. Randall Hughes studies its genetic diversity. She hopes to learn more about how this genetic diversity affects the health of this habitat.
Learn more about ecology in north Florida visiting the WFSU Ecology blog.