#ReignTheSwamp: Scientists Defend Swamps Against Trump

The #DrainTheSwamp hashtag has inspired a new online movement to reclaim the real swamp's good image.
December 5, 2016, 7:50pm

Before becoming our president-elect, Donald Trump promised to "drain the swamp," or, in his words, "break the cycle of corruption" that plagues national politics. So, this is what the bottom of a swamp looks like: Nervous scientists and political appointees with questionable experience and dangerously unscientific views.

That was a rude move, considering that the actual swamp, marshes and wetlands—and the menagerie of life they contain—are crucial to a healthy ecosystem and watershed. They serve as flood protection, water quality improvement, and are "biological supermarkets" for wildlife.

David Steen, Assistant Research Professor of Wildlife Ecology & Conservation at Auburn University, turned the #DrainTheSwamp hashtag from a Trump supporters' rallying cry into a chance to fill our feeds with the most adorably mud-covered creatures the swamp has to offer. "Show me your swamp monsters," he tweeted last week with the hashtag #ReignTheSwamp, and holy shit did Wetland Ecology Twitter deliver.

Here are a few of the best beasts, feathered, furry, scaled or and shelled, that this beautiful hashtag gift has dredged up:

David Steen, Ph.D.December 3, 2016

Know who else can Alayna TokashDecember 4, 2016

Porcupine joined me at Ward Marsh WMA in West Haven, VT on a successful search for a wayward Prothonotary Warbler Vermont Bird PlaceDecember 5, 2016

Picture The SouthDecember 3, 2016

It takes a special kind of blindness to not see the beauty in Paige A. ByerlyDecember 4, 2016

Primitive FishesDecember 5, 2016

Flood the swamp! matt keevilDecember 3, 2016

Come on now, we all know what can really Abby LawsonDecember 4, 2016

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