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 The terrain

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kimerajamm
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PostSubject: The terrain   March 3rd 2011, 6:24 pm

Everglades National Park covers 1,509,000 acres (6,110 km2), throughout Dade, Broward, Monroe, and Collier counties in Florida.[6] The elevation typically ranges from 0 to 8 feet (2.4 m) above sea level, but a Native American-built shell mound on the Gulf Coast rises 20 feet (6.1 m) above sea level.
[edit] Geology

The terrain of South Florida is relatively and consistently flat. Although rock formations are not a central draw to Everglades National Park, the limestone that underlies the Everglades is integral to the formation of the diverse ecosystems within the park. Florida was once part of the African portion of the supercontinent Gondwana. After it separated, conditions allowed a shallow marine environment to deposit calcium carbonate in sand, shells, and coral to be converted into limestone.[7] Tiny bits of shell, sand, and bryozoans compressed over multiple layers forming unique structures in the limestone called ooids which created porous and permeable conditions to hold water.[8]

The Florida peninsula appeared above sea level between 100,000 and 15,000 years ago. As sea levels at the end of the Wisconsin ice age rose, the water table appeared closer to land. Lake Okeechobee began to flood and convection thunderstorms were created.[9] Vast peat deposits south of Lake Okeechobee indicate that regular flooding had occurred about 5,000 years ago. Plants began to migrate, subtropical ones from the northern part of Florida, and tropicals carried as seeds by birds from islands in the Caribbean.[10] Although the limestone shelf appears to be flat, there are slight risesócalled pinnaclesóand depressions caused by the erosion of limestone by the acidic properties of the water. The amount of time throughout the year that water is present in a location in the Everglades determines the type of soil, of which there only two in the Everglades: peat, created by many years of decomposing plant matter, and marl, the result of dried periphyton, or chunks of algae and microorganisms that create a grayish mud. Portions of the Everglades that remain flooded for more than nine months out of the year are usually covered by peat. Areas that are flooded six months or less are covered by marl. Plant communities are determined by the type of soil and amount of water present.[11][12]leather vest
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