September 27, 2009 |
The largest snake in Africa, a powerful constrictor that consumes goats, wart hogs and crocodiles, has been found east of the Everglades, raising the possibility that it is breeding in the wild in a state already overrun with nonnative wildlife. Authorities are investigating the discovery of three African rock pythons, including a juvenile and a female with eggs, in western Miami-Dade County over the last few months. Although state wildlife officials hope these were simply released pets, they are taking seriously the danger that a second nonnative constrictor has established itself in the state alongside the Burmese python, now estimated to number in the thousands in Everglades National Park.
May 17, 2009 |
Concerned that powerboats are tearing up seagrass in Florida Bay, Everglades National Park has proposed a range of possible restrictions on boaters to protect a vast, shallow estuary that supports sea turtles, fish and wading birds. The proposals have generated deep concern among South Florida's recreational fishing community, where many people worry that the most drastic alternatives could shut them out of most of the bay and hurt the tourism industry.
December 15, 2008 |
The mayor of the place that bills itself as "America's sweetest town" has learned to love the stench that wafts from the United States Sugar Corp.'s gigantic mill near the mucky banks of Lake Okeechobee. "To us," said Clewiston Mayor Mali Chamness, "it smells like money." For decades, sugar has been the main economic driver of this isolated farming city of 6,800 people. Today, however, locals fear the industry, and its attendant smells, will dissipate for good if Gov.
November 12, 2008 |
The state has agreed to pay U.S. Sugar Corp. $1.34 billion, instead of the $1.75 billion originally proposed, under a revised deal to buy up vast tracts of farmland to restore the Everglades, the company said in a statement. Environmentalists praised the new deal.
May 20, 2008 |
Wildfires cast a pall across southern Florida, forcing the evacuation of state prisoners in Miami-Dade County, keeping schoolchildren indoors and triggering health alerts. A fire in Everglades National Park threatened the endangered Cape Sable Seaside Sparrow. More than 62,000 acres in the state have burned since May 1, and 1,000 fires have been reported this year.
May 6, 2007 |
loxahatchee national wildlife refuge, fla. -- Like the insatiable plant from the musical "Little Shop of Horrors," a verdant menace is eating the Everglades. The Old World climbing fern, known to botanists as Lygodium microphyllum, spreads its asphyxiating fronds like fingers around the necks of native cypress and mangroves. It smothers the flora of the glades' unique tree islands and starves out the endangered wood storks and other fauna. "You can't cut it because it grows right back.