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Lesson Plans

Re: A&E -- to Arizonans

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Emily Agnes Thomas (eat)
Mon, 8 Dec 1997 13:02:13 -0800 (PST)

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Actually, riparian zones are categorized as wetlands too. Here in Oregon,
supposably beavers created acres of wetlands by daming up creeks and
rivers. Deserts have wetlands too...praire potholes, places like Malheur
Lake in eastern Oregon are essential resting spots, breeding areas and
wetlands for tons of migratory birds. I encourage all to get wet and
discover desert wetlands! - Emily Thomas

On Sun, 7 Dec 1997, kate/Ron Hirschi wrote:

> Several of you have made the comment that the desert is a focus for your
> efforts. Not that it isn't vital, interesting, and important - but your
> areas have some of the most critically important wetland habitats that
> might just hook many kids.
> I hate to say this, but many kids find forests, prairies, and deserts
> extremely boring. Or, perhaps it is simply that many more kids find water
> and wet places so much more inviting.
> That is reflected in attraction to wet places by other species. For
> example, in your most arid places, many typically forest dwelling animals
> are only found in riparian habitat -- that narrow strip of cottonwood and
> willow threading along rivers, streams, small ponds. Even where there are
> forests, the narrow strip of wet loving trees shelters and nourishes more
> than twice the number of animals as nearby, drier woods.
> For all interested in conserving Tuscon water, riparian study/protection/
> attention might lead you to some interesting stuff. As the Colorado goes
> dry so goes the cottonwood. Or is it, as the cottonwoods go dry so goes the
> Colorado? I don't remember the amount of acres and river miles, but the
> devastation of Arizona riparian habitat ranks up there with devastation (by
> percent of original area) with the worst of rainforest destruction.
> Actually, this is true nationally since our ribbons of precious riparian
> woods have been hammered everywhere. Worse, in many places, they are now
> the target of harvest. And, it is the very few trees lining riverbanks that
> help the stream be a stream.
> In art, this is best shown by Giono in his account of a tree planter who,
> by planting thousands of trees, brings a stream back from the dead. In
> reality, dozens of Trout Unlimited Chapters, Fish and Wildlife Agencies,
> and concerned ranchers and other landowners have used this simple tool to
> bring water back to life.
> I urge you all to get wet
> Ron Hirschi

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