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The environment of South Florida; a summary report

Professional Paper 1011

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Abstract

Man has altered the original south Florida ecosystem to a new three-part ecosystem which incorporates an agricultural component, an urban component, and a component of the original ecosystem that is largely unchanged but still has been affected by man. These components are interrelated through the flow of energy and material. The ecosystem of south Florida has undergone extensive alteration for 70 years. About 35 percent (3 ,000 square miles) of the original habitat of the ecosystem has been replaced by agriculture or urbanization. The remaining natural habitat is stressed by exotic plants and animal, changes in water levels and flows, severe fires, pollution, loss of animal and plant populations, and by further growth and development. Man 's most dramatic and long-term effects on the ecosystem have resulted from drainage. Wetlands originally occupied about 75 percent of south Florida; through the years large areas of this land have been drained. In parts of southeast Florida, drainage has lowered water levels 5 to 6 feet below the 1900 level and stressed natural systems. (Woodard-USGS)

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
The environment of South Florida; a summary report
Series title:
Professional Paper
Series number:
1011
Edition:
-
Year Published:
1976
Language:
ENGLISH
Description:
81 p.