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PRIDE donates wetlands book to local library

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By The Staff

If your summer project is to build a wetland, then you should visit your local library to check out "Wetland Drainage, Restoration and Repair."

Eastern Kentucky PRIDE recently donated copies of the book to every public library in the 38 counties of southern and eastern Kentucky, as well as the region's NRCS and Conservation District offices.

"Referring to 'Wetland Drainage, Restoration, and Repair' is the next best thing to our working together to restore a wetland," said author Tom Biebighauser, a wildlife biologist for the Daniel Boone National Forest and international wetlands expert. "My hope is that you'll be encouraged to jump in and build a wetland after reading this book, whether for fish and wildlife habitat, flood control, groundwater recharge, environmental education, or simply for the beauty they add to our landscape."

"This book will lead to fun, family-friendly activities that help the environment, and we are pleased to be part of that," said Tammie Wilson, PRIDE vice president and chief financial officer. "I want to thank Norma Pellerin, the Lake Cumberland regional librarian for the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, for helping us distribute the books to the libraries in PRIDE's service area."

The book is a step-by-step guide for building wetlands that look and function like natural wetlands. The highly effective techniques described were developed by Biebighauser over 25 years building wetlands across North America. His groundbreaking work has earned him national awards and international instructor engagements.

For the history buff, the book features photos and stories about the systematic draining of the nation's wetlands for agriculture and development. In Kentucky, for example, more than 81 percent of the state's original 1.5 million acres of wetlands were drained.

Nationwide, efforts are being made to protect and restore wetlands, which are basically areas of shallow water. The saturated soils in these habitats create unique soil and biological conditions, even in those wetlands that dry seasonally. Wetlands absorb floodwater, filter pollutants and provide plant and wildlife habitat. For more information, visit www.kypride.org/educators/wetlands.php.