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Wading Right InDiscovering the Nature of Wetlands$
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Catherine Owen Koning and Sharon M. Ashworth

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780226554211

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226554495.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 27 September 2021

Vernal Pools: Believing in Wetlands That Aren’t Always There

Vernal Pools: Believing in Wetlands That Aren’t Always There

(p.141) Chapter 6 Vernal Pools: Believing in Wetlands That Aren’t Always There
Wading Right In

Catherine Owen Koning

Sharon M. Ashworth

Catherine Owen Koning

University of Chicago Press

This chapter opens with a surprising discovery of a temporary toad habitat, illustrating scientists’ never ceasing wonder of the natural world and the creatures found there. The temporary nature of vernal pools and their critical role in the life cycle of amphibians and reptiles is highlighted throughout the chapter. Vernal pool ecology is described as the pools’ water levels change over the course of the year. How those changes are marked by the animals that depend upon this vanishing ecosystem highlights remarkable evolutionary adaptations. Stories of salamander brigades and turtle hunters illustrate the varied nature of vernal pool ecosystems. Unfortunately, the supposed temporary nature of these wetlands often means they are overlooked and not protected.

Keywords:   Vernal pool, Salamander, Fairy shrimp, Amphibian, Clam shrimp, Ephemeral, Turtles

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