order to fully understand the legal definition of wetlands, one must examine
the major attributes of the definition. Hydric soil is the first attribute.
A hydric soil is a soil that is, "formed under conditions of saturation,
flooding, or ponding long enough during the growing season to develop
anaerobic conditions in the upper part" (Federal Register July 13, 1994).
Although hydric soils are typically organic soil types such as peats or
mucks, several mineral soil types, including sandy ones, may also be classified
the process of identifying soil type can be very technical, there are
some relatively simple ways an individual can tell whether or not a soil
may be hydric. Due to the ionic reducing conditions caused by long periods
of inundation, most hydric soils have some very distinguishing characteristics.
The following is a list of some common characteristics of hydric soils: