Within healthy watersheds, groundwater-dependent ecosystems contain a whole new world of unique plants and animals. These features, from caves and subsurface streams to fens and springs, contain amazing and unique plants and animals that depend on water beneath the surface.
The Forest Service serves as a steward of groundwater resources together with local communities, states, and other partners. Our goal is to maintain and enhance groundwater fed streams, springs, wells, and wetlands, which supply healthy watersheds and communities with much-needed water.
Hike to a beautiful groundwater-fed lake on the White River National Forest!
Ricks Spring Recreational Site
Learn more about caves and springs on the Uinta-Wasatch Cache National Forest!
Leon Sinks Trail
Hike and learn about sinkholes on the National Forests in Florida!
Hopi-Kaibab National Forest Springs Restoration Project
The video documents ongoing partnership between the Kaibab National Forest and the Hopi Tribe to conduct restoration treatments on natural springs while outreaching and training Hopi youth. Through this partnership, Hopi tribal elders share traditional ecological knowledge to be integrated into Forest Service natural resource management plans.
Watershed Restoration on the Monongahela National Forest
Monongahela National Forest and partners work together to improve watershed health by removing roads that are no longer needed, both soil health and water flow are improved; water gets absorbed into the soil and is released more gradually into streams at cooler temperatures. Not only is this good for native brook trout and other aquatic organisms, but it can help buffer streams against both heavy precipitation and periods of drought that may become more common as the climate changes.