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Locating Wetlands

Wetlands are not always obvious. Wisconsin has more than a dozen different types and some may be dry for most or all of the year. But all wetlands are protected by law and permits are required before you build on wetlands or otherwise affect them.

Wetland ID video guide - Intro

Our "Waking up to Wetlands" video, presented in four modules, takes a lighthearted look at the steps you can take to determine if wetlands are likely present on a property.

In the "Waking up to Wetlands" video guide, the first module provides a road map to locating wetlands:

Know if you have a wetland

Knowing if wetlands are present can help people buy a property that meets their needs –– and enable them to protect wetlands while avoiding legal troubles, flooded basements and shifting foundations that can occur when wetlands are built on. Awareness of wetlands can help you enjoy, explore, restore, or enhance them. Follow these steps:

  1. Map Review
  2. Walk to search for wetland clues
  3. Explore your options

About our partners

The DNR developed the wetland identification tools in this series with funding from the Wisconsin Coastal Management Program, the Great Lakes Protection Fund and the Natural Resources Foundation and in collaboration with the Wisconsin REALTORS® Association, the Wisconsin Wetland Association and government organizations. The project was supported and informed by the Wisconsin County Code Administrators, the Wisconsin Towns Association, The League of Wisconsin Municipalities, and the Wisconsin Builders Association.