A good question. People often think that swamps and marshes are the same thing — but there are some differences.
Marshes: presence of reeds, rushes, cattails. Often treeless and open. Generally rich with life: frogs, turtles, fish, birds. “A soft, low-lying land, characterized by grassy vegetation and often forming a transition zone between water and land” (answerbag.com)
Swamps: partially wooded with trees (bald cypress, mangrove, willow, birch, water tupelo) and shrubs. Muddy, deep soil saturation (up to one foot); swamps usually occur along river flood plains and in “poorly drained basins.” (answerbag.com)
Swamps are more of a wetland that contain tree vegetation. The soil is usually very mucky and highly organic. Marshes are wetlands that do not have trees and instead grasses grow.
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