Wetlands are now recognized as important features in the landscape that provide numerous beneficial services for people and for fish and wildlife. They are also sometimes called marshes or swamps.
Generally, wetlands are lands where saturation with water is the dominant factor determining the nature of soil development and the types of plant and animal communities living in the soil and on its surface. Wetlands vary widely because ofregional and local differences in soils, topography, climate, hydrology, water chemistry, vegetation and other factors, including human disturbance. Indeed, wetlands are found from the tundra to the tropics and on every continent except Antarctica . . . even at the Pathway to Water Quality exhibit at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.