Friday, February 15, 2013

Why We Need Wetlands

Nutrients are important for every organism to grow and develop. We provide these nutrients often in the form of fertilizers which help everything grow. Fertilizers can be great and are loaded with nutrients like nitrate and phosphate that run off into rivers and streams. This over abundance of nutrients allows for overgrowth of algae and an imbalance of sustainability of the ecosystem. Too many nutrients deplete the oxygen which endanger life and create dead zones like those seen in the Gulf of Mexico. Wetlands were once drained because they were considered wasteland but we now know that wetlands like the kidneys in our bodies have a filtering function. Municipal Stadium Wetland is located parallel to Buck Creek in Springfield OH with an upstream inlet from the river that allows for overflow during flood events.

Melt water from Municipal Stadium Wetland making its way back into Buck Creek at the downstream outflow.

Buck Creek like many rivers in Ohio contains a lot of sediment and nutrients. During flood events this sediment can be filtered through the Municipal Stadium Wetland helping to clean up the quality of the water by settling out sediment and nutrients. it also acts as a storage area for water. It is winter in the wetland and there is some outflow downstream due to melting ice and input from ground water in the wetland. We will be examining the amounts of nitrogen and phosphate in the water to help us determine if the balance of nitrogen to phosphate is correct for sustaining life. We will also look at the affect Municipal Stadium wetland
is having on the Buck Creek.


1 comment:

  1. How do you know that the second picture is snowmelt water? I don't see any snow melting. How is direct snowmelt different from snowmelt that has been stored for some period of time in the wetland? (Something to think about, this picture will certainly help us understand chemical differences that we see in our spatial samples.)