Wadden Sea Facts

Wadden Sea Facts
The Wadden Sea is located in the south-east region of the North Sea, made up of wetlands and tidal flats and containing very rich biodiversity. The Wadden Sea's coastline has been modified greatly by human activity including the construction of causeways and dikes. The German and Dutch regions of the Wadden Sea were added to UNESCO's World Heritage List in 2009; in 2014 the Danish region was added as well. The Wadden Sea stretches 310 miles and encompasses 3,900 square miles. The name 'Wadden' is derived from the Dutch word 'wad' which means 'mud flat', due to its extensive tidal mud flats.
Interesting Wadden Sea Facts:
The main landscape of Wadden Sea was formed by storm tides between the 10th and 14th centuries but it continues to evolve as it forms and erodes with the sea..
It is believed that the Wadden Sea was originally formed 7,000 years ago during the post-glacial period.
The Wadden Sea is rich in birdlife and flora and fauna. It is a popular migration stopover area for ducks, geese, and shorebirds that number in the hundreds of thousands.
Prior to human exploitation of the area, Wadden Sea was even more diverse in its bird population and included species such as eagles, flamingos, pelicans, and herons.
At one point fish species such as Atlantic salmon, and brown trout were popular in the waters of Wadden Sea, as well as oyster beds, and lacuna snails. They have disappeared since.
The size of the Wadden Sea has decreased by 50% which has also had an impact on species' diversity in its waters and shoreline.
Harbor and grey seals are two species that the Wadden Sea is important to as a habitat.
Atlantic white-beaked dolphins and harbor porpoises were once extinct in Wadden Sea but have since re-colonized.
Gray whales and the North Atlantic right whales were once found in Wadden Sea but are no longer there and though to be extinct in the region.
The extinct local blue-nose dolphin is believed to be making a full recovery in the Wadden Sea.
Threats to Wadden Sea's ecosystem include invasive species and small organisms, plants, and algae which are harming native species. They have arrived due to human activities in the North Sea.
Islands in Wadden Sea have been popular with tourists since the 1800s, where resorts were built to accommodate them.
A popular activity along the shoreline of the Wadden Sea is mud flat hiking, which visitors do at low tide along the sandy flats.
Wadden Sea is a popular place for pleasure boating for residents and tourists to the region.
The Wadden Sea is considered to be the "largest unbroken system of intertidal sand and mud flats in the work" according to UNESCO.
The Wadden Sea is home to the Dutch Wadden Sea Conservation Area, most of the Danish Wadden Sea maritime conservation area, and the German Wadden Sea National Parks of Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein.
There are more than 1200km of trails for hiking at the Wadden Sea World Heritage.


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