Wetland Identification Program

Contact: Keto Gyekis 517-243-5002

Apply online via MiWaters.  This self directed application will guide you through the process for submitting your request for wetland identification through the Wetland Identification Program (WIP).  Useful information regarding the program and examples can be found below.

WIP Background and Purpose

The Wetland Identification Program (WIP), was established by the State of Michigan in 1998 to assist the public in identifying wetland and non-wetland (i.e., upland) areas on their property.  This program provides applicants with a jurisdictional guarantee of wetlands and wetland boundaries within an identified area of land, following the 1987 United States Army Corps of Engineers Wetland Delineation Manual and associated supplements. Wetland delineations require on-site analysis of vegetation, soils, and hydrology during the growing season, so WIP assessments are conducted typically within the period from mid-April through early November when site conditions allow for accuracy.  Applications are accepted year-round, but any WIP service application may be held over-winter until onset of the spring growing season.

State-wide wetland inventory maps are now available online within the EGLE Wetlands Map Viewer and are provided in place of the previous Level 1 WIP service.  While often useful for various purposes, the general, statewide wetland mapping data presented via EGLE Wetlands Map Viewer are not based upon on-site review (i.e., not verified on-the-ground).  Therefore EGLE does not provide jurisdictional guarantees or maps specific to wetland boundaries associated with those online mapping data.

Individuals interested in obtaining a jurisdictional guarantee of wetlands and wetland boundaries within any parcel of land can submit an application indicating the level of WIP service desired (i.e., Level 2 or Level 3), supporting documentation as required by the WIP service application, and the associated fee to EGLE.  The levels of WIP service and associated fees are as follows:


Level 2 WIP Service: 

This WIP service was developed primarily for relatively small, non-commercial projects such as determining the location of a non-wetland site for a driveway, a single house, or an outbuilding.  Level 2 WIP service consists of an on-site review by EGLE staff within a specific area of land (i.e., WIP Review Area) up to five acres in size.  Staff from EGLE will identify wetland boundaries on site with survey flagging, will GPS all wetland boundaries, and will determine whether the wetland(s) is regulated by EGLE under Part 303.  Upon completion of a Level 2 WIP on-site review, a report/map is sent to the applicant identifying the boundaries of any regulated wetlands and/or unregulated wetlands within the WIP Review Area.  The report/map will provide a guarantee of the areas of wetland onsite regulated by EGLE for three years from the date of the site inspection.  Please note that any land not specifically included in the official WIP Review Area will not be included within the final EGLE WIP report/map.

Level 2 WIP Service Applications MUST include several essential documents to be considered as complete.  An incomplete WIP application will prevent EGLE from completing a WIP service request.

Click for Level 2 WIP Service Application Checklist and Fee Information.  The Checklist is printer-friendly and describes the fee and documents that are sent to EGLE as part of a Level 2 WIP application.


Level 3 WIP Service

This WIP service offers an on-site review of any specific area of land (i.e., WIP Review Area, unlimited acreage) by EGLE staff to verify a wetland delineation (i.e., identification of flagged wetland boundaries) previously completed by a wetland professional (i.e., consultant).  Wetlands within the WIP Review Area must be delineated, flagged, and GPS-mapped prior to submittal of a Level 3 WIP service application.  Often a project area is much smaller than the actual property parcel(s), so a smaller WIP Review Area is mapped by the consultant instead of the entire property.  EGLE staff will determine whether a wetland is regulated by EGLE under Part 303.  Upon completion of a Level 3 review, EGLE produces a report and site map(s).  The WIP report/map(s) will provide a guarantee of the areas of wetland onsite regulated by EGLE for three years from the date of the site inspection.  Please note that any areas not specifically included in the official WIP Review Area will not be included within the final WIP report/map(s).

Level 3 WIP Service Applications MUST include several essential documents to be considered as complete.  An incomplete WIP application will prevent EGLE from completing a WIP service request.

Click for Level 3 WIP Service Application Checklist and Fee Information.  The Checklist is printer-friendly and describes the fee and documents that are sent to EGLE as part of a Level 3 WIP application.


Useful Links

Applications for WIP services should be completed and submitted on-line through MiWaters, which is the State’s wetland/aquatic resources permitting and compliance database.  Payments can be made electronically and securely through MiWaters or as described in Application Payment Options.  The status of WIP service applications processed by EGLE can be searched and viewed in MiWaters Site Explorer

Finding a Wetland Consultant

EGLE Wetlands Map Viewer

What is the difference between a WIP service application and a wetland construction permit application?

Pre-Application (Pre-App) meeting is another option that may be quicker, more useful for some site planning purposes.  An on-site Pre-App meeting with EGLE staff will typically result in verification of whether or not a permit is required for a project, but precise wetland boundaries will not be determined by EGLE.  A WIP service will result in defined wetland/upland boundaries, verified by EGLE.

Additional information pertaining to the Wetland Identification Program