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BioScience® Current Issue

The 2016 Issue of BioScience
- Vol. 66, No. 9 -

A Forum for Integrating the Life Sciences

Publishing 12 times a year. ISSN 0006-3568.


Much of the coastline in this part of Massachusetts is a combination of rocky cliffs and sand beaches, often backed by seawalls, such as this concrete seawall in Swampscott, constructed to protect densely populated waterfront communities. Approximately 17% of the Massachusetts coastline is hardened with engineered shore protection structures, which is slightly higher than the national estimate of 14%. Structures such as this seawall can protect waterfront property from damage and erosion, but a meta-analysis by Rachel K. Gittman and her colleagues in this issue reveals that seawalls also have consequences for the biodiversity and abundance of marine organisms. Photograph: Rachel K. Gittman.

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