Water Wednesday ‘Valley Water Mill Wetland’

As we near the close of the month of May and month of Wetlands, as the rain falls and fills the rain gardens and wetlands at the Watershed Center, it is a prime opportunity to talk about the importance of wetlands.

Wetlands provide habitat for unique communities of plants and animals and act as natural water filters. They help control flooding by absorbing water like a sponge and let the water spread out and they help recharge groundwater into the aquifer.

Wetlands are natural filters and trap sediment by allowing the water to slow down and can filter pollutants out of the water. Wetlands in coastal areas, like coastal marshes and mangroves swamps, help protect the coast from waves and storms.

The wetland at Valley Water Mill helps clean water entering the lake, provides habitat for plants and animals and is an educational opportunity for students on field trips.

Wetlands also provide socioeconomic benefits as they provide food crops like rice, wild rice and cranberries. They support fishing industries for fish, shellfish, crayfish and crabs. Hunters and anglers spend millions of recreation dollars for waterfowl hunting and fishing opportunities provided by wetlands.   Wetlands are considered the most endangered habitat in the world.

(Source: Watershed Center Interpreter’s Guide)

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