Denton regulations require the preservation of areas designated as wetlands, bottomland hardwood forests, and deep water habitats. These habitats are typically found on the first terrace of a floodplain and overbank flow areas surrounding ephemeral and intermittent streams and in low-lying areas that are inundated for short periods of time to permanently wet soils. Many water-related habitats are considered jurisdictional Waters of the U.S. and will have over-lapping federal protection requirements. Areas that may be considered non-jurisdictional wetlands should also be assessed as water-related habitat. If confirmed to be water-related habitat, then the areas will be subject to the City of Denton protection requirements.
Wetlands are characterized by having a high water table level as a driver for the biological and chemical processes typical of wetlands. Wetlands are defined as areas with soils that are inundated or saturated by surface or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that do support under normal circumstances, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated conditions.
Bottomland Hardwood Forests
Bottomland hardwood forests are deciduous forested wetlands and river bottoms with alluvial soil deposition. Periodic to constant wet conditions support certain species of trees such as:
- American Elm (Ulmus Americana)
- Black Walnut (Juglans Nigra)
- Carolina Buckthorn (Frangula Caroliniana)
- Chinkapin Oak (Quercus Muehlenbergii)
- Chittamwood (Sideroxylon Lanuginosum)
- Green Ash (Fraxinus Pennsylvanica)
- Indigo Bush (Amorpha Fruticose)
- Pecan (Carya Illinoinsis)
- Shumard Oak (Quercus Shumardii)
- Sycamore (Plantus Occidentalis)
- Texas Hickory (Carya Texana)
- Texas Persimmon (Diospyros Texana)
Bottomland hardwood forests also prevent the establishment of upland tree species that are not flood tolerant. These habitats are typically found on the first terrace of a floodplain and low-lying areas that hold water for a short period of time. Denton defines this habitat as areas that contain at least 50% of native trees and understory vegetation that make up a bottomland hardwood forest.