Watershed Facts

Banner.15What is a Watershed?

A watershed is a geographical area of land where all the water drains to a common body of water, such as a lake, a river or even the ocean.  Another name for wetlands is a drainage basin.  In our case, the common body of water to which all the water drains is Jacobs Creek.  Watersheds are determined by the geography of the land and not by political boundaries.  In fact, Jacobs Creek Watershed lies within portions of two counties, three boroughs and seven townships.

Why are Watersheds Important?Banner.4

Watersheds are important because they provide drinking water, support habitat for plants and animals and provide areas for recreation and enjoying nature. Environmental problems in watersheds can affect people, wildlife and aquatic life. Litter, motor oil, pesticides or other pollutants that are placed on the ground can run off into streams during rains and negatively impact the water. You can make a difference in your watershed by not littering, conserving water, cleaning up spills of pollutants and joining
JCWA to make stream improvement projects happen.

Why are Wetlands Important?Banner.24

Wetlands are a very important part of watersheds. Wetlands are sometimes called swamps, bogs or marshes and are the connection between the land and the water. Wetlands provide habit for numerous aquatic and terrestrial plants and creatures, including frogs, snakes, insects, waterfowl, fish and mammals. They also provide a place for migrating birds to rest and feed. In additional to all of these important uses, wetlands can also help in flood protection. Wetlands absorb and slow floodwaters, often preventing downstream flooding. Wetlands also protect the health of streams by filtering out sediment and pollutants, preventing them from reaching streams.