like to believe that our recreational activities don't harm habitats.
But they can sometimes, especially in wetlands. Consider these examples:
A birder intent
on identifying a shorebird may inadvertently trample a rare orchid.
A photo class
may gather in one place for too long while trying to capture images
of a nesting swan-both the swan and the surrounding vegetation can
others who use all-terrain vehicles may compact soil, dislodge sediment,
and disturb amphibians and birds.
frequent popular fishing holes can compact the soil and destroy
vegetation through their repeated use of trails.
can add to the problem when camping in meadows or beside streams
and lakes. One campsite might not create a huge impact, but dozens
of them can.
Believe it or
not, even downhill skiers and golfers contribute to wetlands destruction,
although not usually directly. The damage comes from the facilities
that they require.
can use huge amounts of water to keep their fairways and greens
thick and lush. In the Intermountain West, that water usually comes
from underground sources. As these sources are extracted, they may
lower the water table and dry out wetlands.
Ski areas impact
wetlands in the surrounding forests and valleys. For example, leaking
sewer pipes in Big Sky, Montana, threatened to contaminate the wetlands
at the base of Lone Mountain and along the Gallatin River, a blue-ribbon
trout stream and one of the headwaters of the Missouri River.
About What Has Happened to Wetlands...