Wetlands: Biodiversity

Authored by: Jean-Claude Lefeuvre , Virginie Bouchard

Encyclopedia of Environmental Management

Print publication date:  December  2012
Online publication date:  December  2012

Print ISBN: 9781439829271
eBook ISBN: 9781351235860
Adobe ISBN:

10.1081/E-EEM-120001727

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Abstract

Wetlands are highly complex ecosystems subjected to a variety of hydrologic regimes, climatic conditions, soil formation processes, and geomorphologic settings. They include swamps, bogs, marshes, mire, fens, salt marshes, mangroves, and other types of ecosystems saturated by water during all or part of the growing season. They are found on every continent, except Antarctica, and in various climes, from the tropics to the tundra. The extent of the world’s wetland is generally estimated to be from 7 to 9 million km2 or about 4%–6% of the earth. The variety of seasonal and perennial wetlands provides environmental conditions for highly distinctive fauna and flora.

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