The interaction between human uses of land and the protection and maintenance of health ecosystems has confronted societies throughout the ages. Increased understanding of natural ecosystems has allowed us to begin addressing many concerns such as loss of wildlife habitat and decreased recreational opportunities for inner city children. Natural ecosystems are being managed as wilderness areas and are protected against direct human intervention. In urban areas open spaces, such as park lands, flourish as highly modified ecosystems. Whatever the setting, very few places on Earth have not been affected either directly or indirectly by human activities. To balance human activities and the maintenance of the quality of our natural ecosystems, two new 'tools' are now being employed--ecosystem restoration and creation. Restoration and creation are mechanisms used to either repair a degraded ecosystem or to create a new one. This article addresses specifically the restoration and creation of wetland ecosystems.