Date of this Version
The United States has lost more than half of the wetlands that existed prior to European settlement. Wetlands continue to be lost at an alarming rate due to human disturbance and natural processes. The loss of our countries' wetlands is costing our society greatly. Wetlands perform many functions that are beneficial, such as water filtration, recharging groundwater, providing natural flood control, and supporting a wide variety of birds, fish, mammals, amphibians, insects, and plants. Numerous commercially important fish also require wetlands to survive. Wetlands also provide many recreational opportunities.