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Forested wetlands, swamps, are ecosystems distinguished for their fertile soils with poor drainage and plant life dominated by tall evergreen trees. Found on all continents except Antarctica, swamps differ in size from deserted grasslands to vast coastal salt marshes.
See the fact file below for more information on the swamps or alternatively, you can download our 20-page Swamps worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
GEOLOGY AND ECOLOGY
- Swamps share characteristics of both permanently aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, where water makes up most of the soil – a determinant of the nature of the ecosystem.
- Although swamps have features similar to both wet and dry ecosystems, they cannot be categorized definitely as either one of the two environments.
- They are generally distinguished for their stagnant and slow-moving waters, usually linked to adjacent rivers and lakes.
- Although they may be surrounded by mountains, swamps are found in areas with low topographic relief.
- In the United States, swamps grow trees, such as white cedar, tamarack, and white pine. Bald cypress and water tupelo trees, on the other hand, are found in the southeastern region of the United States.
- Swamps have a rich biodiversity and specialized organisms, mostly are frogs and alligators.
- Quercus palustris (pin oak) and Thelypteris palustris (marsh fern) were named from the Latin word palustris, meaning “of the swamp.”
- Historically, swamps are seen as wastelands, drained to serve as agricultural, residential, or industrial lands, and to prevent diseases from swamp insects and animals.
- Generally, they are viewed as useless and dangerous ecosystems. Swamp draining is a destruction of a natural commodity, an ecological habitat of which large portions have already disappeared in most countries.
- Freshwater swamps are found near lakes and streams, where rain and seasonal flooding change water levels. Water-tolerant plants, such as tupelo and cypress, grow and maintain the swamp’s moisty condition.
- Spanish moss hang from branches, and duckweeds (tiny plants) float atop the waters.
- Outgrowths of the trees’ roots, angular knobs called cypress knees, emerge from the water as much as 13 feet (4 meters).
- Tree roots and shadows provide sheltered habitat for nesting of birds, as well as to a number of amphibians and reptiles that have already adapted to the fluctuating water levels of swamps.
- The “Fertile Crescent,” a freshwater swamp found in the middle of the rivers of Tigris and Euphrates, are abundant in biodiversity – wildlife, agricultural spaces, and communication and trading zones for technology advancement. The first known written language and the earliest recorded use of the wheel were found in these swamps.
- Saltwater swamps are found on tropical coastlines, formed from bare flats of mud and sand covered by seawater during high tides.
- Mangrove trees grow on tall, thin roots, giving them the ability to withstand tidal flooding. The growth and decay of roots anchors sand and other sediments.
- Aside from serving as a sheltered refuge for a number of species of birds, whose droppings fertilize the swamp, mangrove swamps are rich in crabs, conchs, and other shellfish.
- Dubbed as the nurseries of the ocean, saltwater swamps house many young marine animals. A number of ocean species spawn on these wetlands. Fish swim into these swamps to lay their eggs.
IMPORTANCE OF SWAMPS
- Most people thought of these wetlands as haunted and forbidden places, breeding grounds for a number of pests, and wastelands with no use. This ecosystem was given less significance until science and research paved the way to explain the usefulness of these disregarded wetlands.
- Swamps are one of the most vital ecosystems – they serve as giant sponges or reservoirs. They moderate the effects of flooding, absorbing excess water and protecting coastal areas from storm surges.
- They also act as purifiers of water, filtering waste and absorbing chemicals from human activities and factories. Those harmful substances that are not absorbed by plants that grow in swamps slowly deposit at the bottom and are buried in sand and other sediments.
- Since some humans are unaware of the benefits swamps have to offer, these wetlands are disregarded and are replaced by human settlements and farmlands.
- Protective measures are needed, and are now being enforced by government and non-government units, to conserve the remaining swamps in the world.
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the swamps across 20 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Swamps worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the forested wetlands, swamps, which are ecosystems distinguished for their fertile soils with poor drainage and plant life dominated by tall evergreen trees. Found on all continents except Antarctica, swamps differ in size from deserted grasslands to vast coastal salt marshes.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Swamps Facts
- Introducing Swamps
- All About Swamps
- Swamp Types
- Useful Wetlands
- Swamps Around the World
- Swamp Food Chain
- Parts of a Wetland
- Types of Wetlands
- Featured Swamp
- Save the Swamps
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Link will appear as Swamps Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, October 18, 2019
Use With Any Curriculum
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