What can be done to protect wetlands

what can be done to protect wetlands

Basic Information about Wetland Restoration and Protection

We can make decisions in our everyday lives which help preserve coastal wetland area and maintain their ecological integrity. Below are steps you can take to protect wetlands. Participate in programs that help protect and restore wetlands. Contact local, state, or federal agencies, community groups, environmental organizations and other non-government organizations. Wetlands can be protected by passing laws and promoting programs that help protect existing wetlands. In Michigan, under the Wetlands Protection Act, people are not allowed to drain, fill, or build on a wetland unless they receive a permit.

We can make decisions in our everyday lives which help preserve coastal wetland area and maintain their ecological integrity. Below are steps you can take to protect wetlands. Contact Us to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem. Jump to main content. An official website of the United States government.

Contact Us. What you can do to protect coastal wetlands We can make decisions in our everyday lives which help preserve coastal wetland area and maintain their ecological integrity. Participate in programs that help protect and how to drink malibu caribbean rum with coconut wetlands. Contact local, state, or federal agencies, community groups, environmental organizations and other non-government organizations.

See American Wetlands Month events. Report illegal actions such as unauthorized wetland fill or dredging activities to government authorities, such as the What does pasteurized honey mean. Environmental Protection Agency or the U. Army Corps of Engineers. Pick up litter and dispose in appropriate trash containers.

Keep surface areas that wash into storm drains clean from pet waste, toxic chemicals, fertilizers and motor oil, which can eventually reach and impair our wetlands.

Use native species when planting trees, shrubs and flowers to preserve the ecological balance of local wetlands. Use "living shoreline" techniques that make use of plant roots to stabilize soil if you own waterfront property and your shoreline or river bank needs to be stabilized.

Avoid wetlands if you are expanding your house or installing a wdtlands. Use phosphate-free laundry and dishwasher detergents.

Phosphates encourage algae growth, which can suffocate aquatic life. Use paper and recycled products made from unbleached paper. Bleached paper contains toxic chemicals that can progect water. Use non-toxic products for household cleaning and lawn and garden care. Never spray lawn how to send a reply mail for job garden chemicals outside on a windy day or on a day that it might rain and wash the chemicals into waterways.

Enjoy the scenic and recreational opportunities coastal rone offer, while preserving their integrity for future generations by minimizing the use of heavy equipment and staying in designated visitor areas where available. Coastal Wetlands Landing Page.

Science News for Students

Mar 29,  · Think about the water that drains into them, where it comes from, and what you can do to keep it clean. Using less water is something everyone can do, Reed says. This helps keep rivers and lakes full, which reduces the strain on wetlands. Paying attention to what goes down storm drains can protect them, too.

By Emily Sohn. March 29, at am. Not totally flooded by water, but not completely dry either, these in-between places rank among the richest ecosystems on Earth. Marshes, mangroves, bogs, swamps, bayous, prairie potholes, and other wetlands often have more plant and animal life than any lakes, rivers, grasslands, forests, or hillsides nearby. Baby fish and shellfish thrive in the protected waters of shallow estuaries, where rivers meet the sea. Many types of migratory birds spend their winters in marshes or stop there to rest during their travels.

Wetlands are full of salamanders, frogs, turtles, snakes, and alligators, as well as sea grasses and other specialized plants. She studies landforms and the processes that made them. Wetlands also help preserve water quality. They protect land from getting battered by storms. And they fuel billions of dollars worth of recreation, fisheries, and other industries. In the last few hundred years, more than half of the wetlands in the United States excluding Alaska and Hawaii have vanished, according to the National Wetlands Research Center.

The center is part of the U. Geological Survey. Such a mix of habitat supports a wide variety of species. Northern pintail ducks spend their winters here. Yet, of all marshes that have disappeared in the U. This group is dedicated to saving the Louisiana coast. During the 20th century, 1. Between and , alone, the equivalent of a football field-sized area of wetland disappeared every 38 minutes. These are more than just numbers. As wetlands vanish, fish and migrating birds lose critical habitat.

Some of these species are already endangered. Human lives are at stake, too. Graves grew up in Louisiana but now lives in Washington, D. Now, after several decades of research, some of the reasons are becoming clearer. In this case, the marshes are falling apart from the inside out. Walking through the wetlands used to be like slogging through a squishy field of wet hay.

Now, invisible holes lie all over the place. People walking around in the marshes today can fall up to their knees in water without warning, Reed says. Why this is happening is a complicated question. There seem to be a number of factors involved, Reed says. One is the Mississippi River. Water used to come down the Mississippi full of sediment and dirt, which piled up in the marshes and kept them sturdy. Flooding was part of the normal course of things, and the process helped distribute sediment.

Then, in the mids, oil companies discovered a huge quantity of oil and gas just off the coast of Louisiana. These efforts ended up changing the flooding cycle.

Next came development, which filled in marshes to build parking lots, shopping centers, and houses on top of the wetlands. Large rat-like animals called nutrias are also causing problems. In a healthy marsh, the animals simply graze year after year without causing too much damage. When a marsh is stressed out, though, nutrias eat away at them. All these stresses add up. The wetlands could take any one or two of them. How do they build themselves up when the land is subsiding?

For about 10 years, Reed has been scattering sediment traps made out of filter paper on the surface of marshes in Louisiana. She attaches the traps to the ground with aluminum wire. Then, she checks them every 2 weeks. The traps are clean when Reed puts them in and muddy when she comes back.

With the data she collects, she can track when and how much sediment builds up over short periods of time and over the years. She also takes samples of the soil to study how plant roots might help hold a wetland together.

Among her results, Reed has found that hurricanes actually deposit a lot of sediment in salt-water marshes. For marshes, it keeps them going. Even as research continues to help scientists understand what wetlands need, understanding can go only so far, Graves says.

The only way to truly reverse wetland destruction, he argues, is through politics. He wants the U. Congress to create new laws that would give Louisiana a big chunk of the profits that come from the oil and gas obtained off its coast. The state could then put this money toward reconstructing the environment. Right now, the U. His passion has grown with his frustration. Kids have started to get involved, too. Earlier this year, an educational program called the JASON Expedition gave middle school students a close look at wetland research in Louisiana.

Most of the students participated in the expedition through the Internet and live satellite broadcasts, but some actually got to dig in the mud and explore the science with their own hands. You may not live in Louisiana or even near a coast. Try to understand how it works. Think about the water that drains into them, where it comes from, and what you can do to keep it clean. Using less water is something everyone can do, Reed says. This helps keep rivers and lakes full, which reduces the strain on wetlands.

Paying attention to what goes down storm drains can protect them, too. When the fish are jumping, the birds singing, and the marshes green, wetlandscapes can be beautiful. Skip to content.

By Emily Sohn March 29, at am. Somewhere in the middle, there are wetlands. Environment The world wastes roughly a sixth of the food produced each year By Rachel Fritts April 12, Sinking marshes in Louisiana create an intricate pattern where water and land meet.

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