Loss and Gain in Mangrove Surrounding the Lençóis Maranhense National Park: An Integrated Approach Using Remote Sensing and SIG Data


  • Juliana Sales dos Santos Geosciences Department, Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Avenida dos Portugueses, 1966, Vila Bacanga, São Luís – MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3814-294X
  • André Luís Silva dos Santos Group of Applied Informatics and Geoprocessing (GIAGEO), Federal Institute of Maranhão (IFMA), Avenida Getulio Vargas, 04, Mount Castle, São Luís – MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9590-6686
  • Claudia Klose Parise Laboratory for Climate Modeling Studies (LACLIMA), Department of Oceanography and Limnology (DEOLI), Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Avenida dos Portugueses, 1966, Vila Bacanga, São Luís – MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9466-788X
  • Thalita Miriam Santos Furtado Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Av. Pedro Calmon, 550, University City of the Federal of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro – RJ, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3704-0511
  • Adilson Matheus Borges Machado Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Estrada Pinheiro/Pacas, Km 10, s/n - Enseada, Pinheiro-MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4838-6913
  • Ulisses Denache Vieira Souza Laboratory of Aerophotogrammetry and Remote Sensing (LASERE), Avenida Professor Lineu Prestes, 338, University City, Butantã, São Paulo – SP, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4964-9017
  • Leonardo Gonçalves de Lima Geological Oceanography Studies Laboratory (LEOG), Department of Oceanography and Limnology (DEOLI), Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Avenida dos Portugueses, 1966, Vila Bacanga, São Luís – MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7449-8639
  • Ana Carolina Sousa Santos Geosciences Department, Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Avenida dos Portugueses, 1966, Vila Bacanga, São Luís – MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3361-3124
  • Milena da Silva Rocha Federal Institute of Maranhão (IFMA), Avenida Getulio Vargas, 04, Mount Castle, São Luís – MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8579-0114
  • Denilson da Silva Bezerra Department of Oceanography and Limnology (DEOLI), Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Avenida dos Portugueses, 1966, Vila Bacanga, São Luís – MA, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9567-7828




ERA5, Wind, Climate change


Brazil harbors the second largest expanse of mangroves in the world, trailing only behind Indonesia. In a regional context, the state of Maranhão stands out, encompassing approximately 36% of Brazil’s total mangrove area, including a portion located on the eastern coast in the Lençóis Maranhenses. This study played a crucial role in identifying the areas of gain, loss, and stability in the mangroves surrounding the Lençóis Maranhenses National Park over a historical period spanning from 1985 to 2019. The study provided detailed maps depicting spatial changes, such as migration and attenuation that occurred in the mangroves due to the influence of aeolian dunes and wind patterns in the region. This long-term analysis, the first of its kind to examine the annual expansion of forest loss in the remaining mangroves around the Lençóis Maranhenses in recent decades, revealed a reduction in the central mangrove areas between 1985 and 2019. This decline can be attributed not only to intense tourist activity and climate change but also to the movement and invasion of sand dunes in certain areas, as observed near the villages of Caburé and Paulino Neves (Pequenos Lençóis) in December
2022. Wind plays a fundamental role as a transformative agent in the local landscape. Through the analysis of wind roses using ERA5 reanalysis data and meteorological stations from the Aeronautics (São Luís and Parnaíba), it was possible to identify and characterize the prevalence of northeast trade winds in the Lençóis Maranhenses region during the years 1985 to 2019, with average speeds ranging from 6 to 8 m/s. The advancement of dunes onto the mangroves surrounding the Lençóis Maranhenses results in burial, reduction, and even migration of mangrove patches. Additionally, over the years, population growth and increasing tourism pressure along the banks of the Preguiças River have drawn attention to the need to implement control and conservation measures in the mangroves to prevent further disturbances in this environment.

Author Biography

Juliana Sales dos Santos, Geosciences Department, Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Avenida dos Portugueses, 1966, Vila Bacanga, São Luís – MA, Brazil

Master em Geography, Geosciences Department, Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), Avenida dos Portugueses, 1966, Vila Bacanga, São Luís – MA.


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