The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) is the principal Federal agency that provides information to the public on the extent and status of the Nation's wetlands. The agency has developed a series of topical maps to show wetlands and deepwater habitats. This geospatial information is used by Federal, State, and local agencies, academic institutions, and private industry for management, research, policy development, education and planning activities. Digital data can be viewed and downloaded through several methods.

Wetlands provide a multitude of ecological, economic and social benefits. They provide habitat for fish, wildlife and a variety of plants. Wetlands are nurseries for many saltwater and freshwater fishes and shellfish of commercial and recreational importance. Wetlands are also important landscape features because they hold and slowly release flood water and snow melt, recharge groundwater, act as filters to cleanse water of impurities, recycle nutrients, and provide recreation and wildlife viewing opportunities for millions of people.

A Congressional mandate also requires the Service to produce wetlands status and trends reports for the nation and to report to the Congress at periodic intervals. Learn more ...

Regional Wetlands Coordinators are located in each of the Service's regions.

 What is new?
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Status and Trends of Wetlands in the Conterminous United States 2004 to 2009:
Report to Congress on the status and trends of our Nation's wetlands resources

This report is the latest in a continuous series spanning 50 years of wetlands data. It represents the most comprehensive and contemporary effort to track wetlands resources at a national scale. Click here to download the report and related documents.

 What is new?
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Characterization of Lands Inundated by the Flood Event of 2011
In April and May of 2011, flooding inundated lands along the Ohio and Lower Mississippi Rivers. Flood levels along portions of the Mississippi River peaked at the highest levels since 1937. An analysis of the extent of flooding was determined by the comparison of MODIS imagery between pre-flood and flood crest conditions. (67MB PDF document)

What is new?
Riparian Document iconWe have a limited amount of hard copy publications available for free: 2000 and 2006 Status and Trends reports, Classification of Wetlands and Deepwater Habitats, and Wetlands Coloring Books. Send your request (name and address) to

Important Documents
Riparian Document iconA System for Mapping Riparian Areas In The United States (November 2009) (1.3MB Adobe PDF icon)
The new standard is designed to guide current and future riparian digital mapping projects. These technical procedures serve as a reference for conducting the image analysis work normally associated with mapping riparian and associated habitats. A riparian classification decoder is also available. Click here to view/download the riparian classification system chart.

Important Documents
FGDC Wetlands Mapping Standard iconFGDC Wetlands Mapping Standard (July 2009) (.3MB Adobe PDF icon)
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has announced the adoption of a Wetlands Mapping Standard that provides minimum requirements and guidelines for wetlands mapping efforts. The new standard is designed to guide current and future wetlands digital mapping projects and enhance the overall quality and consistency of wetlands data. Quality data on wetlands are considered critical for planning effective conservation strategies to benefit USFWS resources now and in the future. (News Release) (Questions and Answers)

Important Documents
Data Collection Requirements Procedures iconData Collection Requirements and Procedures for Mapping Wetland, Deepwater and Related Habitats of the US (1MB PDF)
With the adoption of new Federal Wetlands Mapping Standards, the USFWS has developed an important companion document that describes the technical procedures and requirements for wetlands map data. The document is intended to aid to organizations or individuals mapping wetlands and applying the Cowardin et al. classification system. This document explains the appropriate application of wetland classification and mapping process, and how to achieve the data quality requirements now required in the new FGDC Standards.

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Wetlands Mapper
Last updated: October 6, 2011