Wading bird refugia

With little rainfall over the past 2 months, the wetland wetting front has embarked on its annual retreat into its deepest and safest havens. That would be the swamp forest, sloughs, and marshes. Those low-lying pools concentrate aquatic fauna and attract wading birds and alligators hungry for a meal. This photo was taken a few days ago along Tamiami Trail near Fakahatchee.
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In Big Cypress National Preserve the wetting front has dropped out of the wet prairies and into the cypress. In Everglades National Park, the wetting front has receded into the ridges of its famed ridge and slough wetland waterscape.
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Don’t forget that the wetting front operates on a micro-scale as well, and that is seen no place better than the Everglades where the slight difference in elevation between the lilliputian mountains (ridges) and valleys (sloughs) form an intricate and dynamic mosaic of pools and dry ground that is vital to many aspects of the ecosystem.
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