The roles and importance of wetlands to the environment and ecosystem

Wetlands are habitats for fur-bearers like muskrat, beaver and mink as well as reptiles such as alligators. No other ecosystem is as productive, nor as unique in this conversion process. More than supplemental dietary intake, this produce sustains entire villages.

Because of its many cleansing benefits, wetlands have been compared to kidneys. There is a largely fish-based diet available in these areas due to an excessive amount of water being stored. Wetlands and Water Purification Wetlands also clean the water by filtering out sedimentation, decomposing vegetative matter and converting chemicals into useable form.

This combined water storage an braking action lowers flood heights and reduces erosion. In watersheds subject to human activities, the importance of wetlands on water quality is exaggerated by two factors: Increased nutrient inputs may lead to vegetation changes affecting ecosystem processes such as nitrogen N and phosphorus P uptake and recycling, N2-fixation, and mineralization.

Mudflats, saltmarshes, mangroves, and seagrass beds have high levels of both species richness and productivity, and are home to important nursery areas for many commercial fish stocks.

Removal of Nutrients and Sediments The geology of most wetlands is depositional. The scientific explanation is that the water that drenches the soil stays at the surface for a long period of time.

For example, Wright found that the shortest period from hatching to metamorphosis of amphibian species in the Okefenokee Swamp was 15 days, the next shortest was 24 days, and the other 19 taxa required more than 30 days.

We have established a field manipulative experiment to obtain a mechanistic explanation for an ecosystem level response to increased nutrient input.

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Over-exploitation of wetland products can occur at the community level as is sometimes seen throughout coastal villages of Southern Thailand where each resident may obtain for themselves every consumable of the mangrove forest fuelwood, timber, honey, resins, crab, and shellfish which then becomes threatened through increasing population and continual harvest.

Where the use of uplands is intensive, as in urban areas, wetlands often show signs of stress Ehrenfeld and Schneider, There is a huge land where livestock can graze with a variety of grass spread in the area.

Many other animals and plants depend on wetlands for survival. During a cover cycle that ranges from open water to complete vegetation cover, annual net primary productivity may vary fold. The central hypothesis was: Preserving and restoring wetlands together with other water retention can often provide the level of flood control otherwise provided by expensive dredge operations and levees.

A large number of both invertebrates and vertebrates show some association with wetlands, but species vary widely in the nature of this association. In this way, the significance of wetland functions derives partly from the surrounding landscape Chapter The 34 species and subspecies number of Baikal sculpins is more than twice the number of the analogous fauna that inhabits Eurasia.

Wetlands' microbes, plants and wildlife are part of global cycles for water, nitrogen and sulfur. Protecting Wetlands Every Day! Wetlands naturally produce an array of vegetation and other ecological products that can harvested for personal and commercial use.

Paving or agricultural uses, for example, affect the amount and quality of water that reaches adjacent wetlands. In many watersheds, wetlands process dissolved and suspended materials from an area much greater than their own, which explains their disproportionately strong influence on water quality.

The current project focuses on the role of macrophytes and microbial communities in the internal N cycling. By doing so, wetlands help keep river levels normal and filter and purify the surface water. Constructed wetland systems can be surface flow systems with only free-floating macrophytesfloating-leaved macrophytes, or submerged macrophytes; however, typical free water surface systems are usually constructed with emergent macrophytes.

Many wetland functions and their associated value to society depend on the connections among wetlands and between wetlands and adjacent aquatic and terrestrial systems. Benefits of wetlands in preventing floods Wetlands act as an absorber of water, so when it rains water moves slowly throughout the water systems rivers, streams, lakes, etc.

Coastal Thailand villages earn the key portion of their income from sugar production while the country of Cuba relocates more than 30, hives each year to track the seasonal flowering of the mangrove Avicennia. Concerns are developing over certain aspects of farm fishing, which uses natural waterways to harvest fish for human consumption and pharmaceuticals.

Indeed, an international agreement to protect wetlands of international importance was developed because some species of migratory birds are completely dependent on certain wetlands and would become extinct if those wetlands were destroyed. Even so, wetlands perform some functions, such as maintenance of breeding habitat for some bird species Brinson et al.

The discovery rate of fresh water fish is at new species per year.

Importance of wetlands

A large part of Wetlands in the world has been destroyed due to our negligence. The abundance of invertebrates found within the mud are a food source for migratory waterfowl.

Wetlands and Water Purification Wetlands also clean the water by filtering out sedimentation, decomposing vegetative matter and converting chemicals into useable form. In some places artificial wetlands were developed solely for the purpose of water purification.

No other ecosystem is as productive, nor as unique in this conversion process.Despite their environmental and economic importance, coastal wetlands (wetlands located in coastal watersheds) in the eastern United States are being lost at twice the rate they are being restored.

Coastal habitats provide ecosystem services essential to people and the environment. These services are valued at billions of dollars.

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Importance of Wetlands

Most Important Functions and Services of Wetlands. According to the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, presently 75% of the human population lives in former wetlands and surrounding areas.

The ecosystem engineering that beavers carry out in their habitat has a positive influence on local flora and fauna and greatly increases biodiversity. Studies have shown there is likely to be a greater abundance of birds, reptiles and plant life in areas modified by beavers.

Without Wolves. The wolves of Yellowstone National Park were eliminated byinfluencing a cascade of changes that altered the park’s entire ecosystem. ELK, no longer pressured by predatory wolves, became abundant and began to damage their own habitat. Having lost the fear of being hunted, elk gathered near streams, overbrowsing aspens, willows, cottonwoods, and shrubs that grow.

Wetlands: Characteristics and Boundaries. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

Importance of Reptiles in the Ecosystem

doi: / In watersheds subject to human activities, the importance of wetlands on water quality is exaggerated by two factors: disturbances to uplands that increase erosion and augment the fertility of the landscape, and reduction of wetland.

LeSSON 1 The Wetland ecosystem Lesson at a Glance classroom discussion of what students already know about wetlands. Students learn about organisms within an ecosystem and their interdependence. They read about producers, consumers, and decomposers, and how a community of different living organisms and the physical environment .

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The roles and importance of wetlands to the environment and ecosystem
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