Yellowstone’s wetlands include lakes, rivers, ponds, streams, seeps, marshes, fens, wet meadows, forested wetlands, and hydrothermal pools. They occupy over 357 square miles (924 km2) of Yellowstone: 44% are lakes and ponds larger than 20 acres or having water deeper than 6.6 feet at low water; 4% are rivers and streams; 52% are shallow water systems that dry up most years. Approximately 38% of park’s plant species—including half of the rare plants—are associated with wetlands and 11% grow only in wetlands. Wetlands provide essential habitat for Yellowstone’s rare plants, thermal species, reptiles and amphibians, and for numerous insects, birds and fish.
Last updated: August 7, 2019