Submitted to: Electronic Publication
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/27/2009
Publication Date: 11/1/2009
Citation: Tomer, M.D., Tanner, C.C., Howard-Williams, C. 2009. Discussing Wetlands, Agriculture, and Ecosystem Services: Perspectives from Two Countries. National Wetlands Newsletter. 31(6):21-24. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: A Symposia titled "Wetland Ecosystem Services in Agricultural Landscapes – Comparing Approaches in USA and New Zealand." was held at this year's SWS Annual Conference in Madison. The symposium reviewed the science of wetlands and the role wetlands can play in ensuring the environmental sustainability of agriculture. It included three sessions focused on the overlapping themes of wetland ecology, nutrient processing in wetlands, and wetland hydrology and modeling. Each session provided the audience opportunity to listen to four research presentations and then participate in a facilitated discussion. The article aims to convey a summary of the discussions, as they pertain to the status of wetland science. Several themes arose in discussion that transcended differences in scientific and policy approaches in the US and New Zealand. The paper is organized along those themes, with brief sections on nutrients and biodiversity, tradeoffs among nutrients, optimal locations for wetland reconstructions, and balancing of ecosystem services. Conservation policy drivers and trends in the two countries are also summarized. The discussion identified some important gaps in our knowledge of wetland functions, especially with respect to the relationships and inherent trade-offs between wetland biodiversity and water quality functions in agricultural landscapes.