Happy World Wetlands Day!

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Happy World Wetlands Day!

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Today is World Wetlands Day and so we would like to tell you a little about these amazing ecosystems!

What is a wetland?

A wetland is a place where the land is covered by water, either salt, fresh or somewhere in between. Marshes and ponds, the edge of a lake or ocean, the delta at the mouth of a river, low-lying areas that frequently flood—all of these are wetlands.

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What do wetlands do?

  1. Reduce the impacts from storm damage and flooding

  2. Maintain good water quality in rivers

  3. Recharge groundwater

  4. Store carbon

  5. Help stabilise climatic conditions and control pests

  6. Act as important sites for biodiversity

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What threats do wetlands face?

  1. Commercial and agricultural development

  2. Alien invasive species

  3. Pollution

  4. Climate change

  5. Dams

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Wetlands are extremely important ecosystems, however in South Africa (home to EDGE of AFRICA HQ!) wetlands are the most threatened ecosystems in the country; and since 1900 half of the World’s wetlands have disappeared.

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EDGE of AFRICA is dedicated to protecting and restoring the natural world and as one of our many ongoing conservation projects we adopted a wetland that runs adjacent to Stepping Stones school in Knysna. With the support and assistance of staff at the school, our volunteers have spent many long hard hours removing litter and alien invasive plants from the area.

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The improvement in the health of the wetland is clearly visible (see photos below); however there is a constant battle with litter in this area and that is why EDUCATION is key if this wetland is to survive in the long term. We understand that education goes hand in hand with conservation; and that is why we run regular conservation workshops with local children to inspire our future generations to protect the beautiful world in which they live!

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Happy World Wetlands Day everybody!!

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