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Summary of Vermont Wetlands Guidance
Wetlands Overview
Wetland Basics The associated links provide a description of wetland characteristics; a Vermont wetland photo gallery; the basics of the VT Wetlands Program; and a description of the three indicators of wetland presence and the common wetland types in Vermont.
Do I have a wetland?
Land-Owners Guide to Wetlands A list of signs that indicate you may have a wetland and what steps to take if you do.
Using the Wetlands Inventory Map to Identify Wetlands A “how-to” on using the VT Wetlands Inventory Map to identify wetlands with mapping tools and a link to the VT Wetlands Inventory Map.
Wetland Consultant List A list of qualified wetlands scientists that can conduct a wetland delineation in Vermont.
Wetland Avoidance and Minimization Techniques
Site Design for Wetland Protection A Rhode Island guidance document that illustrates how wetlands can be avoided by smart site design. Vermont wetland regulations still apply.
Low-Impact Design and Stormwater Management Links to low-impact design and storm water management techniques, which are an important part of protecting wetlands and water quality.
Best Management Practices (BMPs) and Allowed Uses
Allowed Uses A link to the allowed uses (Section 6) of the VT Wetland Rules.
Ponds, Docks and Boardwalks VT Wetlands Program guidance on allowed uses associated with pond maintenance, docks and boardwalks.
Solar Power Our new guidance document for solar developer and landowners.
Utilities VT Wetlands Program guidance on allowed uses associated utilities.
Erosion Prevention and Sediment Control Guidance documents that provide descriptions and uses for manmade wetlands and Erosion Prevention and Sediment Control (EPSC) when working in areas sensitive to erosion. *Natural wetlands should never be used for stormwater or wastewater treatment.
Agriculture The Vermont Association of Conservation Districts website provides information about Accepted Agricultural Practices (AAP) and agricultural BMPs. The APPs and BMPs are standards designed to reduce non-point source pollutant discharges through implementation of improved farming techniques.
Ditch Maintenance is a guidance document which outlines the best management practices for ditch maintenance in agricultural and residential areas.
Silviculture and Logging VT Wetlands Program guidance on silviculture as an allowed use based on the Vermont Wetland Rules.
A link to Acceptable Management Practices for Maintaining Water Quality on Logging Jobs in Vermont (AMP's). The AMP's are scientifically proven methods for loggers and landowners to follow for maintaining water quality and minimizing erosion.
VT Fish and Wildlife guidance on managing deer wintering areas. This document is referred to in the silviculture allowed uses section of the Vermont Wetland Rules.
Vernal Pools U.S. Army Corps of Engineers vernal pool information and guidance for determining adequate buffers for the protection of vernal pool species.
Beavers Pamphlets and links that describe why beavers are an important part of the wetland ecosystem and how to manage them responsibly.
Education
Wetland Functions and Values A link to the 10 functions and values the VT Wetlands Program uses to evaluate VT wetlands and their importance to public and ecosystem health. The evaluation sheet is used by wetland professionals for a preliminary assessment of wetland functions and values.
Wetland Buffers "Buffer Zones and Beyond" is a report that addresses the buffer zone in terms of wildlife habitat use. "Wetland Buffers: Use and Effectiveness" is a report detailing the use of specific wildlife species within a certain distance of the wetland edge in the buffer zone.
Wetland Training Opportunities The Vermont Education and Outreach page connects interested parties to training opportunities in Vermont and New England.
The Amphibian Monitoring Training videos were created by the North Branch Nature Center in Montpelier for citizen scientist, curious landowners, and professionals to track amphibian movement and breeding patterns in Vermont.
Flow Blog A link to the official bog of the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation's Watershed Management Division. This is where to find the latest news and science of Vermont's rivers, lakes, wetlands, and watersheds. Flow: the Watershed Management Division Blog
Vernal Pools & Amphibian Breeding Habitat The Vermont Vernal Pools Group provides Vermonters updates on migration and breeding locations and times. This can be a useful tool for consultants and landowners. Please post your observations to: vtvpmp@googlegroups.com.
Vernal pools is a link to the VT definition of vernal pools, their importance, and how to identify them.

 

The VT Herp Atlas shows the distribution of reptiles and amphibians such as frogs and salamanders throughout the State of VT and the VT Vernal Pool Mapping Project offers the public an opportunity to become involved in mapping vernal pools.
The Amphibian Monitoring Training video is a link to learn about locating and identifying areas for amphibian migration during the spring months.
Also find an educational article on fairy shrimp, a small aquatic organism found in vernal pools.

Northeast Amphibian Information Links for exploring the library of information about amphibian breeding habitats from states in the Northeast. The links also include protocols used to define and identify amphibian breeding habitats and guidance for establishing buffers to protect these sensitive habitats.
Invasive Wetland Plant Species Fact sheets and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers resources for invasive plant species that can be found in wetlands and how to manage them.
Conservation and Restoration
Local Wetland Initiatives Contact the Watershed Coordinator in your district to recommend an initiative and find out what initiatives may be happening.
Native Plant Resources A list of nurseries that provide native plant species for wetland restoration and enhancement activities.
Wetland Restoration Links to EPA wetland restoration information; a document on Wetland Restoration, Creation and Enhancement from the US EPA and NOAA; Wisconsin's Wetland Association website on restoring wetlands; and Michigan's Department of Natural Resources page on wetland restoration techniques. All wetland restoration projects should be reviewed by the Vermont Wetlands Office before restoration begins.
Funding Opportunities The Five Star Restoration Program brings together students, conservation corps, other youth groups, citizen groups, corporations, landowners and government agencies to provide environmental education and training through projects that restore wetlands and streams.
Conservation Reserve Program The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is a land conservation program administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA). The long-term goal of the program is to re-establish valuable land cover to help improve water quality, prevent soil erosion, and reduce loss of wildlife habitat.
Wetland Reserve Easement The Natural Resource Conservation Service Wetlands Reserve Easement (WRE) is a voluntary program that provides an opportunity for landowners to receive financial assistance to enhance wetlands in exchange for retiring marginal land from agricultural. WRE provides technical and financial assistance to eligible landowners to address wetland, wildlife habitat, soil, water, and related natural resource concerns on private lands in an environmentally beneficial and cost-effective manner.
Vermont Clean Water Initiative (Clean Water Vermont) The new Vermont Clean Water Initiative – Clean Water Vermont -- reflects an exciting and growing collaboration among municipalities, state agencies, local and regional partners, farmers, businesses and the public to take action that will safeguard the public’s access to clean and safe water throughout the state. Vermonters and our visitors love the State’s streams, rivers, lakes, ponds and wetlands – they help define our green mountain landscape. We know that our quality of life that we enjoy depend upon access to clean and healthy water.
VT Grant Opportunities A list of Vermont Water Quality grant opportunities.
Regulatory
VT Wetland Rules The VT Wetland Rules were created to protect significant wetlands and describe VTANR’s regulatory oversight of wetlands including: identification of wetlands, wetland exemptions, wetland classification, designation of buffer zones, functional criteria, allowed uses, mapping, wetlands determinations, rulemaking and permits.
Do I Need a Wetland Permit? Most activities proposed within 50-ft of a wetland require a permit. If you are unsure if your project requires a permit, contact your district ecologist and review the VT Wetland Rules. Avoidance and minimization must be practiced before a project can be considered for a permit. The associated links help to determine if a project requires a permit.
Permits The VT Wetlands Program issues two types of permits: an individual permit and a general permit. Read the General Permit in order to decide if your project will qualify. The same application form can be used to apply for both the individual and general permits. Please read the directions before filling out the application and use the Permit Application Checklist to help ensure that your application is complete. The checklist is not intended for large-scale projects that may need additional information.
If you are proposing activity in more than one wetland use the supplemental for additional wetlands form.
Also view permits that are currently on public notice and search past wetland permits.
Wetland Violations Wetlands violations should be reported to the enforcement division. They may be referred to a Wetlands Staff after initial review.
Wastewater Design and Wetlands A guidance document for wastewater designers that provides project review information, jurisdictional consideration, wetland delineation criteria, and common wetland vegetation.
Wetland Determination The procedure that VT Wetlands Staff use to determine if a wetland is Class II or Class III.
Act 250 Review Guidelines Some projects require Act 250 review and all Act 250 projects require wetlands review. Learn what type of activities qualify for an Act 250 permit and contact your permit specialist to find out what other permits you may need.
Water Quality Certification A small number of wetland projects require water quality certifications. If you are involved in an activity that is subject to a Federal permit or license and may result in a discharge to waters of the United States, you may need a Water Quality Certification.
Federal Wetland Regulations & Class III Wetlands The Army Corp of Engineers also regulates activities in wetlands. Visit the ACOE website or contact the ACOE representative in your area to find out if you need a permit or project review.
Town Wetland Responsibilities Towns have adopted different zoning to protect water resources. Contact your town to see if they have additional wetland regulations to consider.

WSMD - Wetlands Home

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