Simple Tips For Preserving Wetlands

Wetlands Pollution

Wetlands Pollution

Our wetlands are disappearing.  In fact, over 50% have been lost in the last 200 years. Moreover, what remains is in many cases badly degraded. As you might imagine such losses cannot be sustained. Remember, wetlands play a pivotal role in the environment and are one the most productive ecosystems in the world next to rain-forests. This article presents some simple ways you can help to protect wetlands on a daily basis by explaining things you should avoid. 1. If you change the oil in your car, don't pour the old oil down storm water drains. The same applies to ant-freeze. The reason that you shouldn't do this is that these products do end up in rivers and streams and both can damage or kill underwater plants and animals. So rather than disposing of motor oil and anti-freeze down drains why not place the used oil or anti-freeze into durable containers and take them to an approved receiving center or your local service station for safe disposal. 2. Don't use fertilizers or pesticides incorrectly. Remember, fertilizers are full of nutrients, e.g., nitrogen and phosphorous that can wash into rivers and lakes following rain. The result can be algae blooms that consume the oxygen fish and other organisms need to live. Likewise, pesticides and herbicides contain toxic materials that kill insects and weeds. These can also flow into streams as runoff that is dangerous to not only us but also fish, waterfowl and wetlands plants. You should only use fertilizers and pesticides according to the manufacturer’s directions and by using common sense. For example, don't fertilize if there's rain in the forecast. You should also get your soil tested so you know the correct amount of fertilizer to use. Secondly, give organic fertilizers such as manure and compost, and organic pesticides a try. Give natives a try in your garden as they generally require less water and pesticides. 3. Don't throw away lawn clippings and fallen leaves. All this does is place an additional load on already congested landfills. Simply leave the grass clippings on your lawn as lawn-food when you mow, or compost the clippings and any fallen leaves for later use as a fertilizer.. 4. Don't throw litter into the streets. Clearly street litter, like plastic bags, styrofoam cups, candy wrappers and pop cans, end up in storm water drains and eventually our streams, rivers and oceans. Most street litter comprises plastics and not only do these take hundreds if not thousands of year to decompose, it's not unusual for marine animals to mistake these objects for food with deadly results. By recycling as much of your trash as possible and disposing of all non-recyclable trash responsibly you’ll be doing your bit to help our wetlands. Avoid throwing trash into the streets or down drains and if you see any trash lying around, please pick it up and place it in a trash can! 5. Avoid watering the road, the sidewalk and your driveways. It’s sometimes hard to avoid this but try to ensure that you place your sprinklers so that they only water your lawn and garden. The best time to water is during the coolest part of the day - early morning or late evening to ensure that evaporation is reduced and don't water when it's windy. Be sure to steer clear of the 5 errors discussed above and consider the alternative suggestions that were offered; by doing this you will be doing your bit to help preserve our wetlands.

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