February 2nd marks World Wetlands Day, a day dedicated to raising awareness about wetlands. This day marks the anniversary of the adoption of the Ramsar Convention signed back in 1971. Currently, an impressive 169 nations have signed the convention, and Canada is one of the countries that has committed to protecting wetlands and raising public awareness about their importance.
The Ramsar Convention was signed in Ramsar, Iran!
Canada is home to 25% of the world’s wetlands, more than any other country. It is estimated that more than half of the worlds’ original wetlands have disappeared. They are being threatened by human activity, pollution, and climate change so, it is fitting that this year there is a call to action to save our wetlands! Together, through understanding, education, and action, we can help save the world’s wetlands from disappearing. Wetlands need some TLC from YOU and ME!
Are you a Wetland Whiz? Take our quiz to find out!
True or False? Wetlands are a critical part of the water cycle.
True! Wetlands help moderate river flow, they take on excess water during floods and maintain flow in dry years. Wetlands also recharge groundwater, and clean and remediate polluted water.
True or False? Wetlands act like Earth’s kidneys.
True! Wetlands filter sediments and toxic substances in our water. It acts somewhat like a coffee filter.
True or False? Wetlands are biodiversity hotspots!
True! Wetlands are teeming with life! You can find snails, leeches, frogs, toads, and so much more. Wetlands can also have fish, shorebirds, waterfowl, and mammals. But you will also find lots of plants that live in wetlands, too, like cattails and water lilies.
True or False? Wetlands act like giant sponges.
True! Wetlands hold rain and melted snow, slowing down run-off and preventing flooding. They also release water in drier seasons, reducing risks of both floods and droughts.
True or False? Wetlands are a great place to enjoy an afternoon.
True! Wetlands are a great space to enjoy recreational activities, like birdwatching, oding (dragonfly watching), canoeing, kayaking, or simply listening to frog calls.
Exploring Wild Wetlands in the Classroom!
Join Scientist Heather on an outdoor adventure and discover the different types of wetlands in Canada, like marshes, swamps, fens, and bogs! Identify frog calls and explore cool animals and plants that live in the water. Watch Exploring Wild Wetlands on our YouTube channel and bring wild wetlands into your classroom!
Put on your rubber boots!
Connecting with nature is a great way to get kids excited about protecting the environment and preserving our precious freshwater. So, put on some rubber boots, engage your sense of observation, and head to a Wild Wetland near you to find these 18 scavenger hunt items. Print Exploring Wild Wetlands Guide and look for cattails, water striders, dragonflies and more!
Enrich the Learning!
Enrich the classroom learning with one of our four virtual environmental hands-on workshops.
Our workshops include: Get the Dirt on Plants, Intriguing Invertebrates, Our World of Energy, and Hooo’s in the Owl Pellet. Download our Virtual Environmental Flyer for workshop descriptions.
Note: Workshops are curriculum-aligned so availability and grade level may vary. Check our website for more info or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stay tuned for an exciting new virtual workshop, Wetland Wonders!
Become immersed in the world of wetlands. Discover who makes a home here and how they influence their environment. Create a food chain and explore invasive species. Build a wetland and learn the importance of preserving this habitat. Wetlands are truly a wonder.