June 23, 2023
This vernal pool was restored in 2010. Prior to restoration, the basin held water briefly in the spring, but drained quickly and did not hold water long enough for the local frogs and salamanders to use it for breeding and development of their young. Soil core samples showed that a layer of loose clay was present under the top layer of soil. The topsoil was temporarily removed, and the loose clay soil was gathered together, then redistributed evenly throughout the pool basin, then firmly tamped down using the bucket of an excavator. The layer of packed clay soil greatly slows the movement of water out of the pool basin, and helps it hold water for longer periods of time. Logs and other large pieces of wood were placed in the pool basin to provide shade, shelter, and food for aquatic life in the pool. Check out this poster about the Surface Water Technique, which includes key best management practices for vernal pools.
Photos submitted to Chronolog help us document how this restored wetland matures over time, and how it is changing with our changing climate. Learn more about seasonal wetlands at the Vernal Pools of Pennsylvania website, and learn more about wetland restoration in this Vernal Pool Wetland Restoration Webinar.
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