HGM vs. IBI hydrology
landscape success criteria
floristic quality Abby Rokosch
Jessen Book Siobhan Fennessy
Evaluation and monitoring of wetland restoration projects in order to determine project success has been evaluated in many different ways. The ability to restore a wetland depends on many factors (Kusler and Kentula, 1990; Thayer, 1992; Richardson, 1994; Mitsch and Wilson, 1996 in Kentula, 2000):
Historically, "successful" restoration projects have been evaluated primarily by the establishment of certain wetland attributes such as vegetation cover and the abundance of animal species, it is necessary to move beyond this tradition and focus not only on wetland attributes, but on ecosystem function (Kentula, 2000; Zedler, 2000).
Much like the term "wetland," different authors define success in different ways.
1) Kentula (2000) postulates that success can be positioned in three different ways:
2) Mitsch et al. (1998) define success as the establishment of a biologically viable and temporally sustainable wetland ecosystem.
3) Ewel (1987) takes the definition further, by establishing a list of five criteria that must be upheld by the restored/mitigated wetland in order to consider it a success:
4) Cairns (2000) defines functional success by emphasizing goals that restore the functions perceived by society as ecosystem services. Some of his recommendations include the following goals:
Essentially, all definitions of success are dependent upon the likeness of the restored wetland (both in terms of structure and function) to comparable reference sites. However, many would still argue that no restored wetland will ever be as successful as the original, therefore some minor relaxations in criteria must be considered (Zedler, 1996). Nevertheless, without using standardized criteria, wetland success will continue to go unassessed, which in turn may lead to continued mistakes and failures.
Having thus defined success, the next step becomes working towards the realization of these goals. Specifically,
restoration engineers must: