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A review of methodologies and success indicators for coastal wetland restoration

Zhao, Qingqing, Bai, Junhong, Huang, Laibin, Gu, Binhe, Lu, Qiongqiong, Gao, Zhaoqin
Ecological indicators 2016 v.60 pp. 442-452
anthropogenic activities, ecological restoration, ecosystems, urbanization, wetlands
Coastal wetlands are considered to be amongst the most productive ecosystems and can provide invaluable ecological services. However, coastal wetlands are listed amongst the most threatened ecosystems suffering from anthropogenic activities. The loss or degradation of coastal wetlands has drawn a high level of attention to wetland restoration. Improvement of the structure and function of degraded, damaged and destroyed wetlands may be achieved through ecological restoration. Large numbers of restoration projects have been conducted worldwide based on different restoration goals and different methods. It is undoubtedly important to evaluate whether coastal wetland restoration is successful. However, coastal wetland restoration assessment has become challenging because of current disagreement on definitions and concepts of restoration evaluation. We reviewed the methodology of coastal wetland restoration and criteria for success evaluation, and then summarized the issues for current wetland restoration and success evaluation based on literature review. Moreover, we used an estuarine wetland affected by urbanization as a sample to demonstrate how to establish a success indicator system for guiding wetland restoration and evaluating the success of wetland restoration.