National Geographic : 1994 Apr
Geoguide RIDING AN AIRBOAT WITH HIS FATHER, FIVE YEAR-OLD KENT CYPRESS (LEFT) SKIMS ACROSS SOUTH FLORIDA WATERS JUST OUTSIDE EVER GLADES NATIONAL PARK. AN EIGHT-INCH-LONG ALLIGATOR (LOWER LEFT) SQUEEZES FROM THE CONFINES OF ITS EGG FOR A FIRST LOOK AT THE WORLD. THE BILL OF A ROSEATE SPOONBILL (BELOW) SNAGS FISH, INSECTS, AND CRABS IN THE EVERGLADES' SHALLOW WATERS. The Everglades * Florida's southern tip, which includes Everglades National Park, has a tropical climate even though the state lies north of the tropics. Which U. S. state is found largely within the trop ics-between 231/20 north and 231/20 south latitude? * In what way is the Everglades healthier-or less healthy- today than it was a hundred years ago? Fifty years ago? * Humans have changed the S, physical characteristics of the Everglades by diverting its freshwater. More than 1,400 miles of canals and levees cut through the region. Why has the water been diverted? What else has been changed by the decrease in water flow? * Some two million people live in the area shown on the map on pages 10-11. Where are most of these people clustered? Why have they tended to settle there and not elsewhere? * The Everglades is referred to as a "biologically diverse treasure" on page 17. What does that mean? Scientists want to protect biological diversity. One reason is that some plants and animals might hold answers to finding cures for human diseases. What are other reasons for protecting biological diversity? * Why is the melaleuca tree called the "Everglades Termina tor"? Where did melaleuca come from? Why was it brought to Florida? Was its introduction a success? Why or why not? USE THE GEOGUIDE PAGE ALONG WITH THE ARTICLE "THE EVERGLADES: DYING FOR HELP" IN THIS ISSUE TO HELP CAPTURE THE INTEREST OF YOUNG READERS AND STIMULATE DISCUSSION WITH THEM. GEOGUIDE IS PUBLISHED FOUR TIMES A YEAR.