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CITY OF HOLYOKE, MASSACHUSETTS - page 37 / 43

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(5)

An adverse effect on erosion or sedimentation control.

F.

Seasonal Wetlands

1.

Preamble

a)

Seasonal Wetlands are usually isolated depressions or closed basins that serve, in most years, as ponded areas for runoff or high ground water that has risen to the surface. Seasonal Wetlands may be found in flood plains or in saddles at the base of slopes.  It should be noted that the above characteristics may be shared with Isolated Wetlands. Seasonal Wetlands are distinguished from Isolated Wetlands in that they frequently serve as temporarilyflooded amphibian breeding habitat, as well as habitat for other wildlife, and, as such, are likely to be significant to the protection of wildlife habitats.

b)

In addition, such areas may be locally significant for flood control, storm damage prevention, and ground water and public and private water supply.  Where such areas are underlain by permeable material covered by a mat of organic peat or other organic accumulation, they may be significant to the prevention of pollution.

c)

In addition to the characteristics provided herein, Seasonal Wetlands have long been recognized for their importance to amphibians.  Existing field data show that Seasonal Wetlands provide critical habitat for a number of amphibian species, some of which are listed below. Amphibians requiring Seasonal Wetlands for breeding: Ambystoma jeffersonianum (Jefferson salamander) Ambystoma laterale (bluespotted salamander) Ambystoma opacum (marbled salamander)  Mbystoma maculatum (spotted salamander) Rana sylvatica (wood frog)  Amphibians using Seasonal Wetlands, occasionally breeding/feeding in them:Hyla versicolor (gray tree frog) Psuedacris crucifer (spring peeper) Bufo a. americanus (american toad) Hemidactylium scutatum (fourtoed salamander).

d)

The established presence of certain species of vertebrate predators, such as adult fish populations, can be used as "negative information" or indicators that certain pools are clearly not temporary.  It should be noted that the very reason that so many amphibians use Seasonal Wetlands for breeding, in contrast to permanent ponds, is because they and their offspring are far less likely to become prey in these pools than they are in the shallows of a pond or lake where fish and other predators are present.  The presence of a sustaining population of any species of fish at a site in question would rule it out as a Seasonal Wetland.

e)

A few species of reptiles are known to be occasional users of Seasonal Wetlands.  These include the spotted turtle, snapping turtle, and painted turtle.

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