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 Service, Office of Migratory Bird
 Management. 1994.  Waterfowl
 Population Status 1994. U.S. Govern-
 ment Printing Office, Washington,

 Degraded wetlands may not be able to
 support species that make their homes
 there.  Wetlands in the Kesterson
 National Wildlife Refuge were
 continuously flooded with irrigation
 return flow that had high concentra-
 tions of selenium. As a result, large-
 mouth and striped bass and catfish
 disappeared from the refuge in 1982.
 In the spring of 1983, eggs from water
 birds at the site hatched less frequently
 and had more deformities in the
 embryos.  (Source: Harris, T.  1991.
 Death in the Marsh. Island Press,
 Washington DC.)

 Overlogging of mature U.S. bottom-
 land hardwood forests is believed to
 have caused the extinction of the
 Ivory-Billed Woodpecker, North
 America's largest woodpecker.
(Source:  Gosselink et al., eds. 1990.
Eco/ogicai Processes and Cumulative
Impacts. Lewis Publishing, Chelsea,

Loss in Water Quality

Destroying or degrading wetlands
results in lower water quality. For
example, forested wetlands reduce
nutrient loading into water bodies
such as the Chesapeake Bay. Forested
riparian (streamside) wetlands in
predominantly agricultural watersheds
have been shown to remove  approxi-
mately 80% of the phosphorous and
90% of the nitrogen from the water. If
wetlands, however, do not perform  this
function, results will include an
increase in undesirable weed growth
and algae blooms.  When the algal
blooms decompose, large amounts of
oxygen are used up, depriving fish and
other aquatic organisms. Algal blooms
are a major cause of fish kills.
For more information, contact the EPA Wetlands Information Hotline
at 1-800-832-7828 (contractor operated).