North-northeastern region and the Arrowhead
About 75% of all of Minnesota’s wetlands are in this region, including more than 90% of the wetland acres that existed before Europeans settled here. Intact wetlands contribute to the good water quality found in the area.
Approximately 84% of the region's wetlands have high-quality, natural vegetation.
Central region and metro area
Non-native invasive plant species have taken hold or other significant changes in vegetation have occurred in 82% of the wetlands in this region.
Non-native invasive plant species that tend to force native plants out are the leading cause of wetland degradation. Increases in non-native invasives has been linked with human activities, including urban development and agriculture.
Southern and western Minnesota
Counties in this region have lost an average of 95% of their wetlands due to artificial drainage and agricultural development. This has contributed to the impaired water quality in streams and lakes in the region
Non-native invasive plant species have taken hold or other significant changes in vegetation have occurred in 82% of the wetlands in this region., similar to the central part of the state.
Wetlands: Critical to watersheds
Wetlands are highly interconnected with lakes, streams, and groundwater, providing water for streams and supporting flow through gradual release of water. Wetlands can remove excess sediment and nitrogen from water, though they may become overwhelmed and degraded in the process. Losing wetlands to urban development, agriculture, or other activities, or overloading them, can contribute to water quality problems in other parts of watersheds.