Modelling mangrove-mudflat dynamics with a coupled individual-based-hydro-morphodynamic model

S. M. Beselly*, U. Grueters, M. van Der Wegen, J. Reyns, J. Dijkstra, D. Roelvink

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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As climate-change-driven extremes potentially make coastal areas more vulnerable, mangroves can help sustainably protect the coasts. There is a substantial understanding of both mangrove dynamics and hydro-morphodynamic processes. However, the knowledge of complex eco-geomorphic interactions with physical-environmental stressors remains lacking. We introduce a novel coupled modelling approach consisting of an individual-based mangrove (mesoFON) and a process-based hydromorphodynamic model (Delft3D-FM). This coupled model is unique because it resolves spatiotemporal processes, including tidal, seasonal, and decadal environmental changes (water level, flow, sediment availability, and salinity) with full life-stages (propagule, seedling, sapling, mature) mangrove interaction. It allows us to mechanistically simulate forest expansion, retreat, and colonisation influenced by and with feedback on physical-environmental drivers. The model is applied in a schematized mixed fluvial-tidal deltaic mangrove forest in dominantly muddy sediment inspired by the prograding delta of Porong, Indonesia. Model results successfully reproduce observed mangrove extent development, age-height relationship, and morphodynamic delta features.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105814
Number of pages25
JournalEnvironmental Modelling and Software
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • Delft3D-FM
  • Eco-geomorphology
  • Individual-based mangrove model
  • Mangrove dynamics
  • Mangrove modelling
  • Mangrove-hydromorphodynamic model
  • Sediment dynamics


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