LOCAL ECOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE IN MANGROVE RESTORATION AND CONSERVATION
Mangroves are a complex social-ecological system in need of interdisciplinary research and knowledge integration across disciplines. This research aims to cross social and ecological disciplinary boundaries and explore the need, approaches, and potential to include and integrate traditional and local ecological knowledge (TEK/LEK) for effective mangrove restoration and conservation. Where science and local ecological knowledge are available, both should be included to gain a holistic understanding. For example, in mangrove ecosystems, the range of quantitative data to assess mangrove change, biodiversity or ecosystem services at certain sites may be specific to a certain year, or may not be available. However, at a local level, information can be available at a qualitative, and in some cases quantitative level, in the form of local ecological knowledge. This could include historical information, spatial patterns and ground truthing that would not usually be available. Modelling studies can help to fill knowledge gaps; however, more detailed information is vital, particularly in smaller areas that are not captured by global and regional scale models.