Monday, May 9, 2011

The importance of wetlands and marshes

Wetlands and marshes are vital to the health of rivers and lakes.  They nurture small fish, birds and dragonflies.  Dragonflies feed upon mosquitoes.  Redwing blackbirds balance on cattails and call chirringly.  Eagles and hawks survey from trees and the sky.  Sand hill cranes do their dances then hatch young.  The great blue heron calls from a tree where he has landed. Geese, swans and ducks play in the marsh.   Turtles, snakes, frogs and toads may live partly on land and partly in water.    We hardly know they are there until evening when the toads sing their whirligig songs and the frogs sing their love songs.

Pictured is a swan on her nest hidden among cat tails at Ludington State Park.
Some people may think wetlands are worthless but the plants in them filter pollution and help prevent floods by acting as a sponge.

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