Vernal Pools

[Okay, all these photos are tidal pools not vernal pools, but it’s all I could find in my photo stream (these taken at the Giant’s Causeway in Ireland) and more evidence of their disappearance!]


Vernal pools are small seasonal pools that generally form following the spring snow melt and the autumn fall rains, ephemeral wetlands that create a breeding habitat for amphibians like frogs and salamanders.

Vernal pool inhabitants generally get their start in these shallow waters before moving to drier ground. Vernal pools provide a predator-free environment without which many of these critters wouldn’t survive.

As with all of nature many vernal pools are at risk due to overdevelopment which isolates not just the pool and the creatures getting their start there, but also weakens the gene pool through a lack of diversity.

Agricultural, urban and suburban stormwater runoff — all loaded with contaminants — are another stressor, as is climate change due to the variable and unpredictable nature of the weather, while water’s formerly robust legal protections, like the pools themselves, are slowly drifting away.

What happens to water happens to people. It’s time for us to act, or we’re going to have to plan accordingly.

Today is Day 22 of the #AtoZ blog challenge. I’m feeling a bit parched. How about you?

pamlazos 4.25.19

About Pam Lazos

writer, blogger, environmentally hopeful
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10 Responses to Vernal Pools

  1. Sophia Ismaa says:

    Really informative post. Your pictures are taking me back to childhood and visits to Bangladesh. It was great to learn more.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Love the pictures! I just can’t think of where I’ve seen vernal pools, yet surely Wisconsin must make them, too…hmmm. I suppose the places around my sons’ school gather quite a bit of run-off, only the school’s on the edge of town, so coyotes and the like can still prowl about them in the night.
    Still. Wee ecosystems are a joy to study.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pam Lazos says:

      I think if Wisconsin as a bit wet and squishy – lots of lakes, right, Jean? Although I’ve never been there so I don’t have firsthand knowledge. Vernal pools thrive in a more Mediterranean climate so California and maybe some of the western states during a rainy season. I’m sure they are in places we wouldn’t even think of, like a depression in a compacted trail in the woods that fills up after a rain and takes a long time to evaporate. They’re cool 😎 though, like nature’s Petri dish!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ronel Janse van Vuuren says:

    Beautiful photos 🙂 It’s sad that people ignore the fact that what happens to nature affects us all…

    Ronel visiting with the A-Z Challenge music and writing: Various Artists

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Susan Scott says:

    parched in spite of the pools? They’re gorgeous photos 🙂 Thanks Pam for the reminder that what happens in these pools affects us all – and the venality of those who don’t give a darn shakes me up –
    Roll on Tuesday! FOUR to go! Soon it will be Ze end!

    Liked by 1 person

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