Which of the following best describes the flow of energy through the Everglades? Answer: A combination of all three. The Everglades are comprised of coastal lowlands and Freshwater marshes. Cypress trees are the most prevalent species, but other plants and animals also live here. As the environment is not balanced, native species are hard-pressed to survive. Once invasive species have established themselves, they are difficult to prevent.
Although the Florida Everglades are a mixture of several ecosystems, the best way to describe its flow of energy is as a “freshwater marsh.” The word “freshwater” means woven, whereas “marsh” means raised. This kind of habitat has a unique pattern, which is a characteristic of this ecosystem. The flow of energy is best described by the presence of aquatic life and the existence of different kinds of animals. Moreover, some of the species that live in the Everglades are endangered.
The Everglades contain two types of prairie: marl and water-marsh community prairies. Wet prairies are slightly elevated and have a rich plant diversity, while marl prairies occur where limestone is covered by marl. Marl prairies may protrude as pinnacles, or erode into solution holes, where rainwater is trapped and drained away. Marl prairies remain flooded only three to seven months a year, and are created by layers of periphyton that are loosely attached to limestone. Upon drying, marl becomes a grey crumbly mud.
Coastal lowlands are the area between the tidal mud flats of Florida Bay and dry land. They are characterized by shrubby, salt-tolerant vegetation, and low-growing desert-like plants. Coastal lowlands are often referred to as wetlands, but the term is generally applied to other types of swampland. The Everglades drainage area spans 200 miles, starting near Orlando and running south to the Gulf of Mexico. The area is at least 100 miles wide, with 83 percent of the land outside the national park. The landscape of the Everglades is flat, like a billiard table, so water tends to pool. Because the climate in Florida is so extreme, rainfall fluctuates significantly from year to year.
Before the 20th century, the Everglades naturally managed water flow. It was a vast network of marshes and swamps that grew and contracted in response to the weather and seasons. This natural system provided the habitat for a range of plant life, including alligators, which adapted to the ever-changing depths. They built ponds, and crayfish burrowed into the sediments during the dry seasons. In addition to fish, wading birds, and other wildlife also live and thrive in the mangrove forests. These plants form the base of the food chain in this ecosystem.
Sloughs are low-lying areas that channel water and energy through the Everglades. They remain flooded year-round and are up to three feet deep. They are the main avenue of waterflow and move 100 feet per day. Sloughs provide a habitat for diverse plants and animals, as well as a variety of animals. The Everglades are home to both salt-tolerant plants and animals and abundant wildlife.
The Everglades are composed of several slough systems. The main slough system is the Taylor Slough, which drains much of the freshwater that enters Florida Bay. However, overdrainage in recent years has significantly reduced its water level. This has had a negative impact on the salinity levels in Florida Bay, and the associated flora and fauna.
Coastal lowlands with cypress trees
In Florida’s Everglades, cypress trees are the dominant vegetation. These trees typically grow in clusters in water and thrive in standing water. They are also found in the estuaries and marine habitats. They are found in areas with low elevations and fluctuating water levels. They are a valuable part of the ecosystem, as they form the base of the food chain.
The Everglades are subtropical, a wetland ecosystem spanning two million acres in central and southern Florida. They form when Lake Okeechobee overflows in the wet season and flows inland into a slow-moving shallow river known as the Sawgrass River. The river eventually empties into Florida Bay.
The water is filtered through the Everglades and filters pollutants from the surrounding land. It is the largest source of water for more than one-third of Florida’s population and is the primary source of irrigation for much of the state’s agriculture. The Everglades ecosystem also improves water quality by filtering pollutants and absorbing excess nutrients, reducing flooding, and replenishing aquifers.