Wetlands are permanently or temporarily wet areas that support plants and animals specially adapted to wet conditions.
The types of wetlands and the plants and animals found in them depends on the water - its amount, depth, permanence, temperature, the chemicals found in it, and its source - groundwater, surface water or rainwater.
Waikato Regional Council helps protect wetlands through the Environmental Initiatives Fund and through wetland drainage rules.
The National Wetland Trust was established in 1999 to increase the appreciation of wetlands and their values by all New Zealanders. The Trust has been restoring a regionally significant peat lake and swamp forest complex as part of their plans to build a state-of-the-art wetland interpretation centre near Lake Rotopiko, between Hamilton and Te Awamutu.
World Wetlands Day is also held each year on 2 February, marking the adoption of the Ramsar Convention.
Updated August 2017