2nd Edition

Wetland Indicators A Guide to Wetland Formation, Identification, Delineation, Classification, and Mapping, Second Edition

By Ralph W. Tiner Copyright 2017
    630 Pages 219 Color & 66 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    630 Pages 219 Color & 66 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    Understand the current concept of wetland and methods for identifying, describing, classifying, and delineating wetlands in the United States with Wetland Indicators - capturing the current state of science's role in wetland recognition and mapping.
    Environmental scientists and others involved with wetland regulations can strengthen their knowledge about wetlands, and the use of various indicators, to support their decisions on difficult wetland determinations. Professor Tiner primarily focuses on plants, soils, and other signs of wetland hydrology in the soil, or on the surface of wetlands in his discussion of Wetland Indicators.
    Practicing - and aspiring - wetland delineators alike will appreciate Wetland Indicators' critical insight into the development and significance of hydrophytic vegetation, hydric soils, and other factors.


  • Color images throughout illustrate wetland indicators.
  • Incorporates analysis and coverage of the latest Army Corps of Engineers delineation manual.

  • Provides over 60 tables, including extensive tables of U.S. wetland plant communities and examples for determining hydrophytic vegetation.
  • Wetland Definitions and Concepts for Identification and Delineation

    Wetland Formation and Hydrology

    Plant Indicators of Wetlands and Their Characteristics

    Vegetation Sampling and Analysis for Wetlands

    Soil Indicators of Wetlands

    Wetland Identification and Boundary Delineation Methods

    Problem Wetlands and Challenging Field Situations

    Wetland Classification

    Wetlands of the United States: An Introduction, with Emphasis on Their Plant Communities

    Wetland Mapping and Image Analysis


    Ralph Tiner is a nationally recognized authority on wetland identification and delineation with over 40 years experience. For two decades he was an adjunct professor at the University of Massachusetts–Amherst. Now retired, he continues to teach wetland short courses for Rutgers University.

    "Tiner provides an outstanding overview of the evolution of wetland science and delineation in the United States as well as abroad. The second edition of Wetland Indicators remains useful tool for wetland scientists and practitioners."
    — Jacob Berkowitz, Research Soil Scientist, Vicksburg, Mississippi, USA

    "If you work on wetlands; you’ll need Tiner’s latest work on Wetland Indicators. Wetlands might be controversial, owing to their regulatory status, but there’s no argument about Tiner’s latest book being an outstanding compilation of facts about wetland hydrology, soil and vegetation. This book is so much more than a discussion of indicators; it is more like an encyclopedia of wetland hydrology, soils and vegetation. The scientific scholarship is impressive with hundreds of examples and illustrations drawn from the extensive wetland literature. This book is both a compilation of information in the literature and a synthesis of the material, displaying Tiner’s astounding breadth and depth of knowledge. The global scope of the wetlands described makes this book relevant to the entire world. Anyone who has not experienced a range of wetland conditions and types must delve into this book in order to claim general expertise. The most important lesson of the book is that no two wetlands are exactly alike. Tiner tells us how they differ from one another—and why."
    — Joy Zedler, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA

    "This book by Tiner summarizes much of the scientific research that provides the backbone for effective wetland management in the United States. State and federal wetland regulators would do well to have it on their shelves, and wetland delineators should review the chapters pertaining to wetland types where they work."
    — Allison Aldous, The Nature Conservancy, Portland, Oregon, USA

    "The comprehensive and lucid nature of the text, combined with numerous, excellent illustrations and tables, make this material the best summary on wetland formation and hydrology I’ve ever read. But the author doesn’t stop there – he includes many in-the-field examples of wetland hydrology. This material demonstrates a unique and highly effective marriage of wetland principles and practice. It is clearly written by someone who not only has studied wetlands for many decades, but has personally experienced them and the main issues associated with them over this same extended time period."
    — Donald J. Leopold, State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, New York, USA

    "Tiner’s book provides a historical perspective of the applied field of wetland delineation. This books brings together many of the studies and literature citations that support the delineation method. All of this information would helpful for regulators both state and federal, resource managers, academic settings in classrooms, and just as a recorded history of events involved in this topic."
    —Robert Lichvar, Director of the National Wetland Plant List, US Army Corps of Engineers, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA

    "Very comprehensive coverage of the subjects with numerous real world examples."
    — P. Michael Whited, Professional Wetland Scientist (PWS) and Certified Professional Soil Scientist / Soil Classifier, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

    "This is the most up to date and complete analysis of the state of our knowledge for wetlands in the U.S. Professor Tiner’s treatment will inspire the next generation of wetland scientists with his remarkable range of knowledge and the important topics, questions and problems he highlights and engages the reader with. Professor Tiner’s book provides the best integration of wetland science with wetland policy and regulation to date. His many decades of service to the U.S. government have given him a unique perspective and experience for addressing scientific issues as well as the practical application of science to identify and characterize wetlands for conservation or regulation."
    —David J. Cooper, Colorado State University, USA

    "Ralph Tiner has been teaching wetland delineation courses for many years and truly understands both methods and philosophies of the subject. This updated book puts his knowledge, experience, and ideas on paper (or computer screen) for many to use—both as instructors and students. In a subject area always facing controversy, this book makes an excellent resource for both practical use and citation."
    — Douglas A. Wilcox, The College at Brockport, State University of New York, USA

    "Wetland is no longer a strange vocabulary to anyone from the general public to the regulation agencies, but everyone will benefit from reading this masterpiece that is complete, convincing, easy to understand and implement to protect the remaining wetlands we all depend on."
    —Ge Sun, United States Forest Service, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA

    "In reviewing Ralph Tiner’s 2016 Second Edition of Wetland Indicators: A Guide to Wetland Identification, Delineation, Classification, and Mapping, I am once again pleased with his clear, comprehensive, concise and easily digestible presentation of the science associated with various aspects and approaches to delineation of wetland resources. I have used the first edition of this publication for more than 15 years as a teaching resource, and I am most appreciative of the updates, edits, and the careful and deliberate organization of the various sections of this book. No matter what regulatory protocol is being applied to the delineation of defined "wetland/waters resources", the information contained in this text is applicable and salient. As such, this text is an invaluable resource for those persons who not only care to master the various delineation techniques but it also serves to ingrain a fundamental understanding of why the sometimes divergent protocols are being applied in first place. I found the presentation of each nuance to be exceptionally well written, clear and eminently understandable for both the novice wetland enthusiast as well as more seasoned professionals. A most enthusiastic thumbs-up!"
    — Mallory N. Gilbert, Continuing Professional Education Instructor/Consultant, Troy, New York, USA

    "Tiner’s Wetland Indicators provides an update to the first edition (CH, Nov'99, 37-1546). The new edition expands on similar subject areas discussed within the first edition and explores how wetlands form, as well as the soil (mineral and organic) and vegetative communities typical of wetland ecosystems. The work’s 10 chapters are well organized and contain numerous black-and-white and color diagrams and photos that illustrate wetland concepts. Wetland soil profiles illuminate genetic characteristics and development typical of wetland hydrological environments that may contribute to different wetland ecosystems. Compared to the first edition, the end of each chapter has expanded references, which will be especially suitable for readers interested in wetland ecosystems. An index includes a species list that refers to all tables and texts in each chapter. Wetland Indicators is appropriate for upper-level undergraduates, graduate students, individuals active in wetland soil research, soil scientists, ecologists, engineers, and others involved with wetland manipulation."
    CHOICE, July 2017

    "Wetland Indicators is the paramount book on the topic of wetland delineation in the United States, and a lucid exposition of the knowledge Dr. Tiner has accumulated over his 45-year career in wetland science. This latest edition is a welcome addition to the literature on wetland science and policy."
    Restoration Ecology, May 2017

    "This book will clearly be of most relevance to those with a specific interest in wetlands of the USA and would certainly be an appropriate and accessible volume for anyone seeking an introduction to the complex subjects of wetland science and management in this part of the world. …the availability of useful and accessible reference works on the subjects of wetland processes, formation and ecology can be something of an issue for the discipline of wetland archaeology and to this end Wetland Indicators can be welcomed as an authoritative addition."
    Journal of Wetland Archaeology, November 2017