The effect of the cyclone on the mangroves surrounding Cardwell was catastrophic. A very high proportion of mangrove died along a 20 km stretch of low lying coastline was destroyed. Many square kilometres of mangrove forest look like the photos below which were taken on 3 June 2014.
|This was previously very tall and productive mangrove forest with a canopy at about 20 m|
|Rafts of timber which are held of the ground by stilt roots make walking challenging.|
|Wear a hard hat if you go in here and don't grab the trees as they are ready to fall.|
|Flakes of bark cover the ground - crabs eat leaves not bark and only a few sesarmid crabs are present.|
|Debris forms a timber floor in parts of the forest closer to the high tide line|
|Meunga Creek Mouth days before the cyclone - Jan 26 2011|
|Image taken 3 years later showing large grey dead areas. Blue numbers show photo locations*.|
In Edmund Kennedy National Park which begins on the opposite side of Meunga Creek, there was a board walk for tourists through a similar mangrove swamp (no closed to the public).
|Edmund Kennedy NP Mangrove Board Walk (now closed)|
|Destroyed spurred mangrove (Ceriops) swamp - spurs are another name for buttress roots|
|View of ground - every hole has a crab and the come to the surface and look at you when you walk|
|Living mangroves on lee of foredune then dead mangroves further inland|
|Foredune vegetation is battered but recovering - many trees survived.|