Red Mangrove

Scientific Name
Rhizophora mucronata Lam.
Higher Classification
Common Names
Mangrove (e), Red Mangrove (e), Seebasboom (a)
National Status
Status and Criteria
Least Concern
Assessment Date
A. Rajkaran, J. Adams & D. van der Colff
This species has a national EOO of 30 704 km² and there is continuous decline due to harvesting and habitat loss due to industrial and urban development. Further agricultural activities close to estuaries causes continuous habitat degradation. However, it does not meet any of the threatened criteria at present but should be monitored. Hence this species is currently not threatened with extinction.
Not endemic to South Africa
Provincial distribution
Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal
In South Africa this species occurs from Nahoon to Kosi Bay. It is globally widespread, also occurring along the western shores of the Pacific Ocean, Ryukyu Island, Micronesia, Melanesia, northern coast of Australia, Polynesia and the Indian Ocean; along the East African shores from near Massawa in the Red Sea to South Africa.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Albany Thicket, Indian Ocean Coastal Belt
Evergreen woodlands and thickets along the intertidal mud-flats of sheltered shores, estuaries and inlets, mainly in the seaward side of the mangrove formation.
Habitat loss due to urban and industrial development in Durban Bay and Sipingo. Habitat degradation caused by agricultural activities causing eutrophication and harvesting for building material in Mngazana the largest stand of R. mucronata (Rajkaran et al, 2004) and in other estuaries. This species has been lost from Lovu estuary due to bridge construction and agricultural activities in the past.
Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Rhizophora mucronata Lam.Least Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)
Rhizophora mucronata Lam.Lower Risk - Conservation Dependent Scott-Shaw (1999)

Adams, J., Colloty, B. and Bate, G. 2004. The distribution and state of mangroves along the coast of Transkei, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. Wetlands Ecology and Management 12(5):531-541.

Adams, J.B., Veldkornet, D. and Tabot, P. In press. Distribution of macrophyte species and habitats in South African estuaries. South African Journal of Botany.

Bolosha, U. 2016. A review of the distribution of mangrove forests in South Africa and changes in growth of mangrove species along a latitudinal gradient. Unpublished M.Sc., Rhodes University, Grahamstown.

Boon, R. 2010. Pooley's Trees of eastern South Africa. Flora and Fauna Publications Trust, Durban.

Hoppe-Speer, S.C., Adams, J.B. and Rajkaran, A. 2015. Mangrove expansion and population structure at a planted site, East London, South Africa. Southern Forests: a Journal of Forest Science 77(2):131-139.

Raimondo, D., von Staden, L., Foden, W., Victor, J.E., Helme, N.A., Turner, R.C., Kamundi, D.A. and Manyama, P.A. 2009. Red List of South African Plants. Strelitzia 25. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.

Rajkaran, A. 2011. A status assessment of mangrove forests in South Africa and the utilization of mangroves at Mngazana Estuary. Unpublished Ph.D., Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, Port Elizabeth.

Rajkaran, A., Adams, J.B. and du Preez, D.R. 2004. A method for monitoring mangrove harvesting at the Mngazana estuary, South Africa. African Journal of Aquatic Science 29(1):57-65.

Scott-Shaw, C.R. 1999. Rare and threatened plants of KwaZulu-Natal and neighbouring regions. KwaZulu-Natal Nature Conservation Service, Pietermaritzburg.

Torre, A.R. and Goncalves, A.E. 1978. Rhizophoraceae. In: E. Launert (ed). Flora Zambesiaca 4:81-99. Flora Zambesiaca Managing Committee, London.

Rajkaran, A., Adams, J. & van der Colff, D. 2016. Rhizophora mucronata Lam. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2022/09/26

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Distribution map

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