Local communities are key to the success of restoration projects. They often directly rely on natural ecosystems for their livelihoods and can play an essential role in land management.
However, as the prioritization map by Strassburg et al shows, equity concerns persist at a subnational scale: areas in countries that are less developed and more populated tend to be prioritized for restoration. This can be detrimental to local livelihoods.
The Benefits of Wetland Restoration in Laredo TX
Wetlands provide many services including carbon (C) storage, wildlife habitat and water quality improvement. Those that retain their functions can also help reduce coastal flooding, erosion and land loss, support economic development and recreational opportunities, and protect against drought.
Gains in soil organic carbon and native plant species richness along with desirable declines in plant-available phosphorus were observed among restored wetlands in the Wairarapa, says Te Herenga Waka team leader Dr Stephanie Tomscha from Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand. These changes can contribute to a stable climate, diminished flooding and cleaner waterways, she adds.
But while it is known that wetlands are important, their extent and condition have declined significantly around the world. Restoration in Laredo TX and creation efforts are primarily motivated by regulatory requirements or the desire to provide ecosystem services (ESs) such as flood attenuation, erosion control and recreational opportunities. But monetary values that would monetize these benefits are difficult to estimate (Heal 2000). This is because ESs vary between sites and depend on who benefits, how they benefit, and in what ways.
As part of the planning process, it is important to determine whether the land is suitable for wetland creation. Your local NRCS office can check whether the soils are hydric and provide maps of previous drainage districts and tile lines. Local DEC regional offices can also provide maps of wetlands and their boundaries.
Other factors to consider include the degree of slope of the basin substrate and how the water table is influenced by the slope of the land. The more sloping the substrate, the lower the water table will be. Wetlands that are below sea level may need to use a thin-layer placement of sediment (TLP) strategy to support marsh resilience.
You will need to select the plant species you want to use for your wetland, and the types of wildlife you wish to attract. A wetland near a diversity of other natural habitats usually is more valuable to wildlife than a wetland that is isolated and surrounded by intensive agricultural land uses. It is also important to keep a record of wildlife observations and use.
Wetland Restoration and Creation
Wetland restoration is a complex endeavor. It is hard to find a cookbook for constructing functional wetland, and a variety of factors are important in determining project success. Federal agencies involved with wetland restoration have produced a large body of research to aid in the implementation and evaluation of restoration projects. (Garbisch, 1986; Marble, 1990; Maynord and others, 1992).
In coastal areas, wetlands provide the benefits of coastal flood and erosion protection. They slow wave and tidal energy by increasing the roughness of the water surface, thus reducing their erosive power. They also help to reduce coastal flooding by acting as a buffer for storm surges and waves. However, these functions can only be realized if the wetlands are intact or regenerated. Therefore, it is imperative that wetlands be restored and protected from further loss.
A well-designed wetland will provide a variety of ecosystem services (ESs). However, the reliability of these benefits over time is dependent upon the quality of the site’s habitat. A wetland can lose its ESs if it is subjected to stressors.
One important management activity is establishing buffer zones between the wetland and surrounding land. This filters nutrients, sediments, and toxins from the adjacent land. It reduces turbidity (clarity) of the water, which in turn affects oxygen levels, and it provides shade and cover for wildlife.
The type of wildlife found in a wetland depends more on its level and constancy of water than the species of vegetation. For example, frogs like muddy areas that provide food and shelter. Many wetland habitat features can encourage mammals, such as providing berry-producing shrubs and dense brush, or installing roosting boxes for bats. Some wildlife will also use a wetland for breeding. It is essential to provide nesting areas and hiding places.