Wetland preservation is already required by state and federal laws related to the Clean Water Act. To ensure ecological success, however, conservation must extend beyond the limits of the wetland itself. Without consideration of the land surrounding the wetland, preserved areas are susceptible to invasive and exotic species, reduced biodiversity and sediment accumulation. To prevent this from occurring, wetlands should be surrounded by buffer zones. Buffers should have a minimum width of 50 feet, with an average of 100 feet.
Where possible the buffers should be in the form of parks with trails running along connections. A constituency for buffer protection can be built by building a user base. Diversity within the buffer zone, through the use of varied features such as islands, sandbars, and thoughtfully designed storm water retention ponds, will strengthen the habitat.