Water | VOL.10, ISSUE 59, March-April 2010 |

Wetland Conservation

Wetlands, natural and man made, freshwater or brackish, provide numerous ecological services. The density of birds, in particular, is an accurate indication of the ecological health of a particular wetland. However, unsustainable use of wetlands without reckoning of their assimilative capacity constitutes a major threat to the conservation and management of these vital biodiversity rich areas. This restricts the prospects of future generations to utilise the benefits of services provided by wetlands. Definition The term ‘wetlands’ refers to a broad collection of water-based ecosystems, but more than 50 definitions of wetlands are used worldwide. Wetlands vary enormously in size, from tiny village ponds to lakes, bogs, marshes, rivers, and the largest inland delta in the world, the Okavango Delta in Botswana, and character. Ramsar Convention on wetlands uses the definition, ‘areas of marsh, fen, peatland or water, whether natural or artificial, permanent or temporary, with water that is static or...

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