The Great Wet Lands Essay
The Great Wet Lands
The wetlands play a vital and significant role in the Earth as a terrestrial Ecosystem that some scientists even consider them to be among one of the most productive ecosystems on Earth itself. This is because the wetlands serve as homes for countless animals, plants, and micro- organisms that dwell in such locations. In the past, the majority of wetlands were considered to be marshy wastelands which occupied diseases and pests.
Sadly, because the government had put such little value into wetlands that in the mid-1800’s millions of acres of were just given to the states. This was done for no other reason but but in hope that people would destroy the wetlands and build cities over them. Unfortunately, due to this fact, up to 80% of wetlands were not temporarily but permanently lost due to construction.
They were also lost due to conversion to such developments as farms and homes, which at the time were thought to be needed more than the wetlands. Fortunately, the importance of wetlands has been realized since the 1800’s. The significant role that is vital in not only our lives, but our environment as well has become strongly evident increasingly more so throughout the years. By product of their own efficiency, wetlands offer many economic and socioeconomic benefits. Among the extensive list of benefits of wetlands include the fact that they have the characteristic of being a low lying body of land, which means they are capable of slowing the flow of water.
Thus, the surrounding area is filled with moisture, which is most definitely considered to be a benefit. In the physical sense of geography, a wetland is actually considered to be an environment at the interface between truly terrestrial ecosystems and aquatic systems, which makes them different from each other yet strongly dependent on the both of each other. Essentially, wetlands often considerable biodiversity and endemicity. Generally, wetlands include swamps, bogs, marshes, and similar areas. Wetlands are typically found under a vast range of hydrological conditions. However, some times water can saturate the soil, resulting in a hydric soil.
A hydric soil is characterized by an absence in oxygen either some or all of the time, thus called reducing environment. There are a large number of vegetation in wetlands. Plants called hydrophytes specifically adapt to the reducing conditions of the wetlands allowing them to survive. They are often called wetland plants. Although species who are intolerant of the absence of oxygen soil cannot survive. These species are called upland plants.
While, there are of course species that cannot survive the considerably harsh environment of the wetlands, there are still several species that can. Many reptiles thrive on the marsh and swamp. In fact, without the protection of the camouflage, many of them would not be able to survive. Hydrology of a wetland is the area that is periodically or permanently saturated at the soil for a period of time. This is a vital process for the maintenance of the wetlands.
www.wetlands.org www.swv/wetlands.org www.42explore.wetland.htm www.wetlandMAPS.com
University/College: University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 18 March 2017