Ecosystems: Freshwater Slough
A slough is a low-lying area of land that channels water through the Everglades. These marshy rivers are relatively deep and remain flooded almost year-round. Though they are the main avenue of waterflow, the current remains leisurely, moving about 100 feet (30 meters) per day.
Dotted with tree-islands, the vast Everglades landscape channels life-giving waters from Lake Okeechobee southward. Everglades National Park contains two distinct sloughs. On the west is the larger Shark River Slough, also known as the "River of Grass." The smaller, narrower Taylor Slough lies to the east of Shark River Slough. Both sloughs discharge into Florida Bay. A series of other sloughs that flow through the Big Cypress Swamp supply freshwater to western Florida Bay and the Ten Thousand Islands.
Did You Know?
Over fifty-nine color varieties of the Liguus Tree Snail have been seen in and around the Everglades ecosystem. They graze on the algae and lichen that grows on smooth-barked trees. During the dry winter months, they are usually sealed to these trees to conserve moisture.