Living Reference Work Entry

The Wetland Book

pp 1-12

Date: Latest Version

Connectivity of Wetlands

  • Tracy A.G. RittenhouseAffiliated withDepartment of Natural Resources and the Environment, University of Connecticut Email author 
  • , William E. PetermanAffiliated withSchool of Environment and Natural Resources, The Ohio State University Email author 


Connectivity implies connection or movement of resources across the landscape. Wetlands are dynamic ecosystems imbedded within or at the edges of larger systems and thus wetlands are natural “connectors” between upland and aquatic systems. Although many ecological processes have been used to describe wetland connectivity, here the focus is the movement of water and animals within and among wetlands as these are known agents of connectivity. Prior to these examples, a brief discussion of how connectivity has been used in the legal protection of wetlands demonstrates why connectivity is important to the conservation of wetlands.


Animal movements Amphibians Buffer zone Hydrology Metapopulations Isolated wetlands Water Wildlife