|Forest canopies intercept much of the precipitation that falls over them. This rain and snow would otherwise fall directly to the ground, gradually washing soil away. The forest prevents this erosion from taking place. The water that lands in the forest canopy gently drips to the ground with much less force than direct rainfall.|
The forest canopy intercepts snow before it piles up on the ground. Photo by Maya Walters
Riparian zones are the wetlands in the forest, or the areas around streams, rivers, and ponds. The water connects the forest, carrying dissolved nutrients from one area to another, as well as washing plants' seeds downstream and providing a migration corridor for animals. These areas usually support the most diverse life in the forest.
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