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Why We’re Mapping Historical Wetlands

From the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service:

You have to know where you’ve been to know where you want to go.

We’ve all heard that expression before. It turns out that its true for environmental issues too.  

That’s exactly why our National Wetlands Inventory program is taking a historical look back at the way the country used to look, specifically focusing on wetlands.  By locating and mapping where wetlands used to be on the landscape, we can move forward in knowing where the best places to re-establish wetlands are.

Wetlands at 
Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge (USFWS)

At the time of European settlement in the early 1600’s, the area that would eventually become the United States had approximately 221 million acres of wetlands, but less than 400 years later, only 103 million acres remained.  

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