Discovery Alphabet at the Watershed

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Algal Bloom: large, visible masses of algae (plant-like organisms) that develop in bodies of water typically during warm weather.

Aquatic: living or growing in water

Biodiversity: the existence of a wide variety of plant and animal species in their natural environments.

Conservation: the careful preservation, management, and  protection of plants, animals, and natural resources

Ecosystem: the relationship between many parts of an area; this includes relationships between living things like animals, plants, people, and microorganisms, and non-living things like water, soil, and sunlight

Forb: the name for any flowering herb that is not a member of the grass family

Germinate: to sprout or develop into a plant

Invasive Species: a species that does not naturally occur in a specific area. When introduced, they may cause harm.

Marsh:  low, soft, wet land that is often treeless and generally characterized by a growth of many plants including grasses and sedges.

Native: belonging to the area in which something lives. Cardinals are birds that are native to Illinois; flamingos are non-native birds. 

Niche: an organism's physical location and its role/function within that ecosystem.

Runoff: excess water from rain or melted ice/snow that runs off the land into streams, ponds, or other surface water. Runoff can carry potentially harmful pollutants.

Scat: the feces or poop of an animal; scientists can tell what animals have been in an area by identifying types of scat

Sedge: a grass-like plant that grows in wet places

Watershed: an area of land that contains a set of streams and rivers that all drain into one larger body of water