Our wetlands are important ecosystems for native flora and fauna. Such areas were previously referred to as 'swamps' or 'bogs and tended to be viewed as unproductive land that was best drained and filled.
As land became scarce wetlands also began to be seen as potential development or agricultural sites. Many housing and industrial sub-divisions in Devonport, as in other parts of the world were built on land that was previously wetlands.
Today it is accepted that well functioning wetlands have enormous benefits for the environment and the community.
Amongst other things they:
- Provide habitat for native flora and fauna (including our own endangered Central North Burrowing Crayfish Engaeus grantulatus)
- Act as a water filter, purifying water as it flows through the wetland
- Act as retention basins for water when there are floods
- Add nutrients to the water and soil
- Serve as recreation areas for such activities as walking and observing wildlife
- Improve the appearance of the landscape by contributing to its diversity
- Are educational tools for flora and fauna studies
- Are useful scientific research sites
- Are culturally important for nature appreciation