Seepweed plants brighten up the coast in northeastern China -

Seepweed plants brighten up the coast in northeastern China

Today’s Image of the Day from NASA Earth Observatory features Shuangtaizi Estuary in northeastern China, where millions of people visit each fall to witness a seasonal phenomenon. The Shuangtaizi Estuary is home to rare seepweed plants that paint the coastline of the Bohai Sea bright red. 

“The small shrubby plants, Suaeda salsa (also called Suaeda heteroptera), start out greenish-red in the spring but become a bright crimson in fall as seasonal shifts in rainfall and tides expose seepweed to slightly saltier, cooler conditions. This leads to the increased production and accumulation of the red pigment betalain,” says NASA.

“However, the estuary has changed significantly in recent decades due to coastal development, raising questions about the long-term viability of its colorful seepweed beaches and wetland habitat.”

Image Credit: NASA Earth Observatory 

By Chrissy Sexton, Editor

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