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Discover Nature: American Wetlands Month

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Wetlands serve an important role in the Missouri landscape – providing nutrients to soil, habitat for wildlife, and critical geographic buffers from flood and drought conditions. Celebrate American Wetlands Month this May with a visit to a wetland.";

Spring storms bring the threat of damaging wind, hail, flooding, and erosion, but they also restore life to the landscape – providing nutrients to plants and soil, habitat and drinking-water for wildlife and humans.

    

Wetlands are areas that hold these heavy rains and make the benefits of spring storms last. 

This week, on Discover Nature, we celebrate May as American Wetlands Month. 

Wetlands support more than half of Missouri’s total plant species, more than a quarter of the state’s nesting and migratory birds, a wide variety of fish and amphibians, and 200 plant and animal species considered rare or endangered in Missouri. 

Natural wetlands change continually, creating a high degree of biological productivity and diversity.  Their soils develop in saturated conditions, and as water levels change, they act as sponges – providing a buffer from spring storms and summer droughts – and filters, to purify our waters.  

A lifeline for our state’s natural history, and biodiversity, wetlands contribute to our clean water, rich soil, and healthy wildlife communities. Get out and discover nature, and celebrate American Wetlands Month. 

Learn more about wetlands with the Missouri Department of Conservation’s online Field Guide, and find examples of these important areas near you with their online Atlas.  

Discover Nature is sponsored by the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Kyle Felling was born in the rugged northwest Missouri hamlet of St. Joseph (where the Pony Express began and Jesse James ended). Inspired from a young age by the spirit of the early settlers who used St. Joseph as an embarkation point in their journey westward, Kyle developed the heart of an explorer and yearned to leave for adventures of his own. Perhaps as a result of attending John Glenn elementary school, young Kyle dreamed of becoming an astronaut, but was disheartened when someone told him that astronauts had to be good at math. He also considered being a tow truck driver, and like the heroes of his favorite childhood television shows (The A-Team and The Incredible Hulk) he saw himself traveling the country, helping people in trouble and getting into wacky adventures. He still harbors that dream.
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