August Wells: Aspiring Writer. Inspirational Drinker. Entertainment Insider. Lover of Making People Think Twice.
Hope-catcher. Believer in the 2 Truths Philosophy ("coffee is good for you, coffee is bad for you"). Wisher of Change for those who unwaveringly form an opinion based on what they hear on TV or read in the media. Donator of Unfaithful Words & Images for your enjoyment ("unfaithful" due to my juxtaposed thought & oxymoronic content). ~
I love people who think for themselves & innovate original opinions (at least to the best of their knowledge "original" because there really is no such thing).
I love inciting the masses to view things from another less-traveled perspective.
I love beautiful, inspiring or artistic imagery. ~
I research, I intuit, I love . . . and sometimes I actually write pieces worth reading.

This is Flourencina, a bird that lives in the Evergaldes.  It would be nice to see her flourish and move out of endangerment! 

*Keep this in mind as you read the below:

INTERESTING HOW IMPORTANT WATER IS EVERYWHERE, even a place made up mostly of water.   

The Everglades ecosystem has helped shape the natural heritage, culture, and economy of Florida and the Nation. Recognized worldwide as a unique and treasured landscape, the Everglades is a one-of-a-kind network of natural resources that makes up the largest wilderness east of the Mississippi River, and the largest subtropical wilderness in the United States. The Everglades is the primary source of drinking water for more than 7 million Americans.  Over the past 100 years, population growth, development, the excessive drainage of wetlands, and the resulting changes in water flow and quality have caused great stress to this fragile ecosystem, and stresses are only expected to grow. 

For many years, efforts to restore adequate supplies of high quality water to Everglades National Park and the surrounding region were at best slow, and often times stalled. Lawsuits, State-Federal disagreements over respective commitments, and bureaucratic delays led to years of limited activity and dispute.  In good government news, the current administration has made restoring the iconic Everglades a national priority …. committing to return the Everglades to health. Working in partnership with the State of Florida, the Administration has restored more than 3,000 acres of the floodplains along the Kissimmee River; is constructing the first mile of bridging for the Tamiami Trail to restore water flow to Everglades National Park; has worked with landowners to improve habitat and water quality on more than 400,000 agricultural acres; and has begun implementing key components of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan to make more water available for environmental, urban and agricultural use. We have also reached an historic agreement with the State of Florida to make essential water quality improvements that will ensure the Everglades receives the clean water it needs, including $879 million in State commitments for water quality projects. 

THIS HAS BEEN TODAY’S GOOD NEWS.

This is a real owl named Fabaruci who lives in the Everglades.  I’d like to see him live and thrive.

HOW IS THE EVERGLADES ECOSYSTEM THREATENED?

For most of its history, that massive rain-fed series of wetlands, lakes and rivers we call the Everglades flowed from just below Orlando and through Lake Okeechobee south to the tip of the Florida peninsula, as well as east and west towards the coasts. The Everglades covered almost 3 million acres.

“In the past hundred years, people have been digging canals and building dams in the Everglades so they could take water out of it, develop agriculture and build homes,” says Dr. Tom Van Lent, senior scientist at the Everglades Foundation. “We’ve built so many canals and drained so much water that the natural flow is interrupted.”

In fact, as the twentieth century dawned, early conservationists saw the dredging of the Everglades as the smart, progressive thing to do.

As a result, the Everglades is now less than half its original size. 1,800 miles of canals and dams break it up, with water control points and pump stations diverting the natural flow of water to coastal towns and cities. Water must be released to estuaries to prevent flooding and Florida finds itself in a situation where there is often too much water in the wet years, and not enough in the dry.

Sixty years ago, demographers predicted South Florida’s population would reach two million people by the 21st century. It’s already at seven million, and expected to double in the next 50 years.

All that growth has squeezed the Everglades as development reached inland from both coasts to accommodate the burgeoning population. And with the people came pollution, especially phosphorus from the fertilizers used in agricultural areas north and south of Lake Okeechobee.

Extremely low levels of nutrients, such as phosphorus, are part of the reason that the Everglades is a unique mosaic of sawgrass, tree islands, and open water. However, the nutrient pollution, such as that coming from agricultural runoff and other fertilizers, allows for the growth of species that upset the balance of the ecosystem such as cattails, harmful algal blooms and duckweed. The sulfur in this agricultural fertilizer, through a complex series of biological and chemical processes, leads to accumulations of toxic mercury in fish, birds, reptiles, and mammals, even in the endangered Florida panther.

Nutrient pollution and overdrainage are not the only threats the Everglades faces.  Exotic plants and animals can be thought of as a kind of biological pollution. Exotic animals, such as Burmese pythons, and exotic plants, such as Brazilian pepper and Australian pine, displace natives and threaten to disrupt ecosystem balance.