Welcome to Homer Soil and Water's two-phase, EPA-funded wetland project:
- Phase 1: assess the functions and values of Kenai Peninsula wetlands,
- Phase 2: identify management strategies and recommendations designed to maintain assessed functions and values.
Phase 1: From 2010-2012, Homer Soil and Water led a collaborative effort to identify and assess functions and values of Kenai Peninsula wetlands. Functions are things that wetlands do, like storing stormwater or maintaining streamflows; values are things that society cares about, like healthy fish populations and open space. The two are closely interrelated.
Sixteen wetland functions/values were assessed during Phase 1. Which functions/values were looked at and how they were assessed is described in the Phase report: Kenai Peninsula Wetlands – a Guide for Everyone. To
access the guide, click on its title.
Phase 2: In 2012, Homer Soil and Water began Phase 2 of this project. We are now in the process of identifying management strategies and practices that can be used to maintain the functions/values of particular wetlands.
Three key concepts underly successful wetland management:
- Consider the whole watershed or subwatershed when deciding how to manage particular wetlands—be aware of watershed-scale patterns that the wetlands fit into and what roles they play in these patterns;
- Manage to allow for the full range of variability that characterizes natural systems like wetlands and streams—short-term, seasonal, and long-term high flows and low flows are all important;
- Maintain key connections among the pieces that make up watershed systems—wetlands need to connect to streams; small headwater streams need to connect to bigger mainstem channels. Connections keep watershed systems working.
The links below provide additional background on Phase 1 activities. New links will be added as Phase 2 continues.
Peninsula Wetlands Illustrated with Photos (pdf)
Kenai Peninsula Wetland Who’s Who
(a linked directory of agencies and organizations involved with wetlands on the Kenai Peninsula, this table links you to a wealth of information about wetlands)
Factsheets about the collaborative 2‐year project:
- Factsheet 1—Introducing a project to assess functions and values of Kenai Peninsula wetlands
(introduces the project and explains how it got started)
- Factsheet 2— How to look at wetland maps online, and what we’re adding to those maps
(the map above is an example—different colors indicate different kinds of wetlands)
- Factsheet 3— What do we mean by wetland functions and values?
(tells you what we mean by words like “functions” and “values” and provides a bit of background)
Presentation to Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly on September 20, 2011:
(The two pdfs below cover, in a couple of pages, lots of things it's useful to know about peninsula wetlands including:
What's the formal definition of a wetland? How do you find out how "suitable" your wetland is for various land uses? What might go wrong if you put a "poorly suited" land use on your wetland? How does this project tie into the Western Kenai Peninsula Soil Survey and existing wetlands maps? You'll also find a colorful diagram illustrating some wetland functions and values. The first page of the first pdf also explains what a soil and water conservation district is.)
Descriptions of the method the method we tailored to assess wetland functions and values
Copyright, 2006-2013 Homer Soil and Water Conservation District