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Laguna Mandinga is a shallow lagoon system composed by the Laguna Mandinga Chica or Redonda and Laguna de Mandinga Grande, located in the state of Veracruz, Mexico. It is associated with the Atoyac and Jamapa river basins, which traverse the mountainous area of the Sierra Madre Oriental and the coastal plains of the Gulf of Mexico. The system is separated from the sea by a barrier of sand dunes, but with communication to it through the estuary of the Jamapa River, which runs 150 km receiving waters from the Huatusco, Cotaxtla and Totolapan rivers before ending its journey in the Gulf of Mexico in a place known as Boca del Rio near the city of Veracruz.
Laguna Mandinga presents a North-South orientation, while the nearest gulf coastline adopts a Northeast to Southeast orientation. Together, the two form the Punta de Anton Lizardo. The Lagoon is a low energy and tropical environment where the average temperature is approximately 27 degrees C and salinity levels stay low due to its indirect connection to the sea, but enough to host the sea grass specie Ruppia maritime. Oxygen levels are high and can reach saturation levels in some areas of the system due to North winds action and photosynthetic activity. Quartz and some iron-magnesium minerals, as well as biota typical of low energy areas are present.
Coordinates: 19.02° N 96.07° W
Selected Characteristics: (Castaneda and Contreras, 2001)
Surface Area: 33 km2
Average Salinity: 18 ppt
Castaneda L.O. and F.E. Contreras. 2001. Serie: Bibliografia Comentada sobre ecosistemas costeros mexicanos 2001. Centro de Documentacion Ecosistemas Litorales Mexicanos. Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana, Unidad Iztapalapa, Division C. B. S. Depto. de Hidrologia. Publicacion electronica (CD). ISBN:970-654-912-9. Mexico, D.F.
Keywords: Low salinity, High oxygen, Low energy, North wind activity, Shallow lagoon system, Seagrass
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