Long Pine Key Campground Closed
Due to improvements to park roads and parking lots, the reopening of the Long Pine Key Campground will be delayed due to paving work. It will reopen mid-December. Those desiring to camp will be able to utilize the Flamingo Campground instead. More »
Ecosystems: Freshwater Marl Prairie
Large areas of freshwater marl prairie border the deeper sloughs of the Everglades. These relatively short-hydroperiod marshes are typified by a diverse assemblage of low-growing vegetation.
A complex mixture of algae, bacteria, microbes, and detritus that is attached to submerged surfaces, periphyton serves as an important food source for invertebrates, tadpoles, and some fish. Periphyton is conspicuous and is the basis for the marl soils present. The marl allows slow seepage of the water but not rapid drainage. Though the sawgrass is not as tall and the water is not as deep, freshwater marl prairies look a lot like freshwater sloughs.
Did You Know?
The Ten Thousand Islands area of Everglades National Park composes part of the largest stand of protected mangrove forest in the Western Hemisphere. South Florida's coast serves as a vital nursery ground for many of our most prized commercial and recreational marine species.