Essay Example on the Everglades National Park

Published: 2022-12-09
Essay Example on the Everglades National Park
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Environment Animals
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1863 words
16 min read


One of the greatest ecologically assorted regions in the US is the Everglades. It is located in South Florida, South East of the United States bordering Georgia to its North and Alabama to its Northwest. Florida is nicknamed as 'Sunshine State' due to its warm subtropical climate in the central and Northern areas and experiencing a tropical climate in the Southern regions. The natural area is filled with life, resulting in it to be an extremely essential ecosystem. Everglades National Park was established and registered by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in collaboration with the Ramsar Convention being a wetland of worldwide significance, a global Biosphere Reserve, besides being a global heritage place in the early 1970s. Close to two dozen federally endangered and vulnerable class inhabit the Everglades, a vital cause why large areas are protected.

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Ecosystem Description

Everglade is characterized by its strangely amusing biodiversity. The major types of vegetation and scenery present in this national park are the prairie and wetland marshes (Lodge, 2016). The prairies maintain the sawgrass, a plant that makes the journey of investigation difficult due to the sharp leaves of the plant, the seawaters are not so deep. In the driest regions of the park, pinelands comprised of slash pine having vegetation of tropical plants establish an extremely varied habitat. Cypresses which thrives with roots on the aquatic surface are actually characteristic of huge cypress wetland which resembles a tropical rainforest. Close to the sea, where the salt and fresh water merges, the mangrove which is the prevalent in the western hemisphere, shields highlands from tornado winds, floods and waves which is also the dominant foliage. The forest types present here comprise of swamp forest overpowered by a red bay and pond apple. Humid hammocks encompass a different grouping of tropical butterfly kinds and local rampant tree snails. Fire is also a major feature in this park that besides water drift, helps retain early successional territories. An increase in soil superficial elevation results in more dominance of scrub and hardwoods.

As my other peninsulas, there is a decline in the animal species in utmost taxa from the inland association to the tip. Southern Florida is not excluded having a decreased sum of invertebrates and vertebrates from south to north. 30 reptile species, 70 breeding species of bird, 14 amphibian species and 17 mammals' species. Streams and ponds are vital as dry period refugia for a variety of these types. Adequate water heights are critical for a number of taxa to breed. The rain falling on central Florida links with Lake Okeechobee overflow and later flows southward awaiting evaporation and falling again as rain, penetrate the land to get back to the aquifer which later drains to the sea. In simple terms, Everglades is an area nourished by a current of water. Even though there is a minimum danger to it from undeviating human effect, invasive types including Burmese Python impend the natural ecosystem and wildlife at large. Located in Sothern Florida, Everglades exhibit a natural temperate wetland. The region's ecosystem consists of a variety of wetland kinds comprising coastal prairies, boughs and sawgrass marshes, mangroves, pineland, Cyprus swamps, and tropical hardwood hammocks. They have a dimension range of forty to fifty miles in width and a length of a hundred to a hundred and thirty miles. There is a large increase in the size of the wetlands due to drainage for Cultivation and development. Everglades acts a home to a large range of native wildlife. More than 350 kinds of birds live in the ecosystem, containing the migrant and wading birds (Heymans, Ulanowicz and Bondavalli, 2002). There are some bird species in the region that are endangered, including the Cape Sable seaside sparrow and the Snail Kite. Everglade is also a home for over forty mammal kinds comprised of the extremely threatened Florida panther, White-tailed deer, raccoons, marsh rabbits, gray foxes, and bobcats. Reptile species surviving in the ecosystem include Florida kingsnake, American alligator, Florida mud turtle, and the corn snake.

The introduction of the snakes resulted in a decline of useful small species of mammals that previously inhibit there. The drop of numbers in the population of the vital kinds as a result of Burmese pythons has major ramifications on the overall ecosystem balance and the environment at large. The remains of the endangered bird types are found in the intestinal tracts of the Burmese python indicating that the snakes are a major contributor to the drop of the threatened types in the environment. These species threaten other species leading to their extinction. Several studies suggest that in the current time, pythons have a lower success rate in areas where there is a difference in the climate considerably from South Florida's Everglades. Comparing temperature and periodic precipitation from numerous locations close to the Burmese Python's inborn South Asian array and scheming it against similar regions in the US, scientists have generated a clue of the region the snake might possibly increase by 2100.

In the current climate, studies reveal that these pythons can hypothetically survive through most southern regions and laterally the coasts. The favorable climate allows the pythons to occupy many states in the Midwest. Although pythons are freshwater snakes, scientists conducted research to evaluate their tolerance. Results portray that they could survive in salty water at their young age while an adult python could have a longer lifespan there and hence a good opportunity that they could conquer other suitable habitats. Many snakes died from the introduction to cold when they did not find shelter while the rest died of temperature decrease to abnormal low points. Two comparable studies were carried out where pythons were not reserved out of Florida which resulted in to similar results. Captive Burmese Pythons located in north-central Florida were keenly observed in cold weather conditions, where almost every snake died while undertaking the study even though heat and shelter were provided. It is therefore unlikely that wild snakes would be in a position of surviving in the regions outside Florida where in the winter temperatures decrease to lower points than temperatures which the pythons are used to. This notion is emphasized by the other study where pythons located in Southern Florida were tracked in the case of recording low temperatures during early January to observe their ability to surviving.

The majority died from the cold, upholding the notion that Burmese python lives within a specific range of temperature. It is evident that cold weather has both behavioral and physical impact as the temperature declines, digestion either stops or reduces and the levels of activity greatly diminishes which results in the snake succumbing to climate conditions. It is assumed that Burmese pythons cannot withstand the fewer winter temperatures which are normal along the South US. Socially, pythons don't possess suitable understanding or skills for survival since majority of them do not search for shelter or try basking in the sunlight.

Importance of Everglade to Humans

The Everglades ecosystem is surrounded by cities including Fort Lauderdale, Miami, and human progress. Its wildlife and marshlands draw large populations of boaters, birders, outdoor enthusiasts, and anglers. It also offers critical, and frequently undervalued, benefits to people, referred to as 'ecosystem services'. Everglades ecosystem provides clean drinking water for at least one-third of the Floridians residents and irrigation for large pieces of land of the state's cultivation. The wetlands enhance the quality of water by absorbing surplus nutrients, filtering pollutants, reducing floods and replenishing aquifers (Abtew, Obeysekera and Shih, 1995). Everglade's ecosystem has experienced immense ecological harm from the ages of over-drainage to avert flooding and encourage development. In the year 2000, Congress approved the main ecological renovation project in the world. This restoration is anticipated to take more than 35 years for completion at a cost of $10.5 billion. The restoration is not only meant to repair the damaged ecosystem but also in ensuring consistent clean drinking water provisions for the state and protecting developed regions from flooding (Light and Dineen, 1994).

Everglades acts as a barometer of how efficient hunt for storage amenities will be provided with the rise of the population pressure. America's Everglades has helped in shaping the natural custom, Florida's economy and the nation as a whole. In the current days, the rate of consumption is faster compared to the inhabitants and fossil energy pollute the ecosystem by emitting nitrogen and mercury that is of a threat to the health of children. Water usage is both diverting wasteful and natural flows. Excessive consumption of water results to polluted runoff smothering the ecosystem's in a supplemented soup of unusual prolonged famine and flood.

Environmental History of Everglades

During the end of the 20th century, some Burmese pythons became an attack species in the Everglades National park in South Florida. As they become a gradually favorite exotic pet, the snakes were introduced from Southeast Asia to the U.S in large numbers. It is not clear if they were persistently unconfined into the wild by the individual who did not consider them as the pet or if they escaped detention (Engeman et al., 2011). Even though the U.S department has enacted some laws on the importation of snakes in the year 2012, the number of years available for bleeding and enough food and shelter in the wild has enabled them to increase tremendously. The exact number of snakes in the Everglades cannot be estimated since even finding them becomes tedious work. The estimated total number of snakes given by several scientists is said to be tens to hundreds of thousands.

The population of Burmese pythons has been so far noticed in various regions such as Winokur Georgia, Jacksonville, and Chipley but bearing in mind that their native region was southern Florida. Smaller animals such as rabbit have reduced in population since the invasion of Burmese pythons during the 1980s. Also, the people of deer and bobcat has also significantly diminished due to their intrusion. The decrease in population of mammals in the everglade's ecosystem has caused an effect or rather a shift of blood-related meals for the insects like a mosquito to pathogens conveying animals. This is a health hazard to the people of contracting malaria which is a fatal ailment. The invasion of Burmese python not only put wild animals at risk but also the community at large. It is essential for the implementation of a huge firm to minimize the invasion of pythons with the aim of getting away with the entire population of pythons.

The Burmese python species had a small issue of occupying the Everglades ecosystem. The Everglades ecosystem is suitable for them to thrive there since it has a warm habitat which enables them to grow fast. The Burmese python is known to be an opportunistic hunter since it could feed on small mammals and found out that they were right.

The Burmese pythons are an abundant species of snake that predominant in many parts of the countries throughout the South Asia region (Rodda, Jarnevich, & Reed, 2009). It is categorized as a vulnerable species its country of origin under the Endangered Species Act red list of most dangerous species in the land. It is considered as one of the most abundant species of snake.

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