The Florida Everglades have been touted as the 'subtropical Serengeti' in reference to the great biodiversity. This vast 'River of Grass' is teeming with life; the only everglades ecosystem on the planet, making the area a high priority for conservation efforts.
Alligators, Leatherback Turtles, Manatees, both salt and fresh water fish and a wide variety of wading birds call the Everglades home.
Panther has made an encouraging journey back from the very brink of extinction and every year more Panther cubs are thriving in this unique ecosystem.
The Fragile Florida Everglades
The Florida Everglades region, the traditional home of the Seminole people,
is the southern terminus of the Kissimmee-Okeechobee-Everglades Ecosystem; beginning
with the Kissimmee River, leading into Lake Okeechobee
, and into this swampy wetland of 10,000 islands and rivers of grass.
Human habitation increased dramatically in the 1930's with the construction of dikes and canals. By the 1980's, the Everglades were drying up and dying off as half of its water was going to human consumption.
As a result, massive restoration began in the 90's, and since that time some sizable wetland areas south of Okeechobee and surrounding Miami
have been nursed back to health.
ADDITIONAL FLORIDA CITY PAGES:
- The vast 2,357 square mile Florida Everglades National Park represents only 20% of the swamp's original boundaries.
- The Florida Everglades are the only area in the world where alligators and crocodiles coexist. (We didn't say 'happily' though!)
- The Everglades is really a very shallow, slow moving river. Inches deep but up to fifty miles wide, the River of Grass forms as Lake Okeechobee overflows its banks onto the southern Florida plains and the waters make their way to the Gulf of Mexico at a lazy rate of 2,000 feet per day!
- The subtropical Everglades contain over 220,000 acres of sugar cane within its boundaries - that's half of all the cane produced in the United States of America.