The Basic Processes of Wetland Restoration

11 November, 2015

Wetland restoration is a process of rehabilitating a degraded or destroyed wetland. Other than rehabilitation, wetland restoration refers to its enhancement as well. So a wetland is not only rehabilitated but enhanced.
Since it is a process, there are things that you need to do before starting your wetland restoration project.

Before you start restoring your wetland, you need to consult your neighbors, and if possible, get advice from organizations dealing with wetland restoration.

Then, gather information on landscaping and land consent use. After which, you need to define your project goals. Only after defining your project goals that you start drawing a concept plan.

The parameters of the concept plan include:

● Wetland layout
● Planting patterns/zones
● Pre-existing features
● Location of specific areas such as ponds, bird hides and bunds

Immediately after drawing the plan, you can start identifying the areas with markers for planting and fencing.

It takes careful planning also in preparing your property for the restoration. There are the steps you need to undertake in order to prepare your property:

– Identify the weed infestations
– Keep track of the weeds just outside your wetland that has the potential to re-infest it (ex. large grey willow)
– Determine or prioritize where to start. If possible consult an expert of plant pest, including weed control strategy and advices of methods
– Use weed control measures if the infestation is heavy
– Spray the grass one month before planting

After clearing out your wetland with those weeds, start determining what, where and how many plants needed in the restoration, including where to scout plants for your restoration.

It is best to consult with experts on what type of plants to use, where to plant it, and how many plants needed. Wetland restoration experts such as Rural Design can assist landowners in their concept plan and in the planting implementation to ensure wetland sustainability.

Professional help is indispensable in a variety of ways as they provide:

● cost effective design and solutions for your type of restoration
● funds through organization intervention
● wetland management and implementation procedures
● facilitate in land resource consent processes
● advice from experts (surveyors, planners, ecologists)

You can even provide extra native wildlife in your restoration. You can provide logs and trees for those birds, as well as banks for its shelter and for perching sites. For fishes, you can plant flax and sedges in it, thus, providing a shelter while keeping the water cool and clean.

After doing the necessary restoration, get a covenant for your site. Secure this to ensure the protection of the restored wetland areas despite changes in ownership and control.

Then check the progress of your restoration. Maintain a system for your weed and pest control. As much as possible, keep track of its progress by recording it so you know what works and how effective the planting and restoration done on your wetland.

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