Florida's Vanishing Wetlands

By
Real Estate Agent with Florida Property Experts

frog

This post is going to be the first in a series about the loss of Florida's wetlands and how it impacts our state and our way of living.  (All these photos are of pets or critters I've found at one time or another)

I have to admit that I've never been overly concerned when I've heard people talk about the loss of our wetlands. After all, I've sold several properties that had large portions of them that were not buildable because they were zoned as wetlands. How could there possibly be a problem?

And let's face it. The state of Florida is below sea level and we can find swamp land everywhere. So until now, it has seemed to me, that many people have been overreacting, with their concerns about losing wetlands. I say "until now" because this week I learned some astounding facts.

First of all, I'm a Florida native. I was born and raised in the Daytona African clawed frogsBeach area and I've been selling homes right here since 1995. The very things I love about Volusia county, are the same things that may cause our northern, seasonal residents to "freak out". But what can I say? I'm a Florida girl. I LOVE frogs, lizards, geckos, salamanders, turtles, and many other little critters. And I always have to pick them up and pet them, to give them a little "hello" and let them know they're special and appreciated. (Yes, I pet frogs. Just ask my clients who have seen me do it... Karen, Johanna, Melissa, and many others) And you don't know what you're missing until you've gotten a lizard to open it's mouth, then clamped him on your ear lobe! LOL! What a beautiful earring!

But it all seriousness, Florida has been losing wetlands, in spite of strict laws, since it's inception as a state. The pace of loss is slowing, but it has not stopped.  

Most Floridians know that the Florida Everglades, which comprise the majority of Florida's wetlands, have been in danger for many years. Invading plant and animal species have caused great harm to the delicate Everglades ecosystem. Many projects are in place to restore the natural balance of the Everglades, and will hopefully save many species from extinction. But many people are unaware that coastal wetlands are among the world's most productive ecosystemspeacock

Consider for a moment, the many different types of birds that migrate here each winter, to the same spot, year after year. But this year, they arrive to find their winter home has disappeared, due to a new housing development, or drought, or fire, or any number of reasons. For many types of birds, it causes confusion as they look for a new place to winter. They need to find the necessary water, food, plant life, nesting spaces and safety from predators. But most birds won't look for more than a few possible locations and they eventually die. They don't survive the winter and never return to their summer homes. These are the ones that are dwindling in number, year after year, and will eventually become extinct unless something is done.

I have so much information on this subject that you can expect me to write several posts over the next few weeks. There is much that is being done to rectify this situation, but there is still much more that needs to be done. 

I've been told that instead of saying "Something must be done." You should be saying "I must do something". So this is where I'm starting. I'm educating myself and those of you who may not be aware of this problem. Selling real estate is my job. But there are many other things that I'm capable of doing as well. And since I don't want to lose my little critter friends, this is one of the causes to which I'll be contributing my efforts.

Thank you for reading. I'll do some research to find ways in which we can monetarily support wetland preservation. Hopefully I'll have some of that information in my next post on this topic. If any of you are aware of something of this nature, please leave the information in the comments. 

Lisa Hill

In this litigious day  and age, unfortunately this is necessary. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by The Activerain Network and it's members and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of Lisa C. Hill, "The Smart Choice" and Adams Cameron & Co., Realtors. Lisa Hill, Active Rain and Adams Cameron & Co. claim no responsibility for the actions taken by anyone, as a result of these opinions.

 

close

This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Location:
Florida
Tags:
real estate agent
florida
realtor
everglades
wetlands
lisa hill
ecosystem
floridas ecosystem
floridas wetlands

Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Rainmaker
1,534,477
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County
You are right Lisa. having grown up within an hour of your home area (Palatka), I have seen the wetlands become encroached upon....when will it stop? But, I don't pet all the critters!
Dec 28, 2007 02:47 AM #4
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate

Bob- The 2 frogs in the photo were pets. They're African clawed frogs. You can get them in many pet stores that have large fish departments. They get as big as your hand and they're completely aquatic. But be fore-warned if you get a couple, they will eat you out of house and home. And they were costing me about $50 a month on filters and food. Oh! And they jump right out of the tank if it's not covered. I had to very carefully move the stove to retrieve one of them one time. (They can survive out of water for up to 2 days.) I eventually gave them to a girl who works at PetsMart. She said she had a 100 gallon aquarium and was looking for something interesting to add to the mix =)

That's what I get when I pray for God to provide a good home for my smooshy little froggy friends that I could no longer keep up with =)

Dec 28, 2007 06:06 AM #5
Rainer
195,296
Elizabeth Nieves
The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group - Durham, NC
Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team
LISA:  This is an important issue, and I admire you for using the platform you have to bring attention to it. I will look forward to your series about the topic. GBU!
Dec 28, 2007 07:46 AM #6
Rainmaker
337,524
Thesa Chambers
Fred Real Estate Group - Bend, OR
Principal Broker - Licensed in Oregon
upon returning to Miami from our cruise last week we took a tour of the Everglades - we were shocked to know how slowly the water moves - and how quickly it evaporates - great information hon
Dec 28, 2007 05:59 PM #7
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate
Thesa- Does the speed of movement have anything to do with the cooler temperatures at this time of year? Or is there that much pollution, slowing down the water flow?
Dec 29, 2007 08:15 AM #8
Ambassador
3,689,433
Patricia Kennedy
Redfin - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital
Lisa, you have amazing photos and important information.  I'm watching for your upcoming posts on the Everglades.  Wow!
Dec 29, 2007 09:00 AM #9
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate
Patricia- Thanks! I'm glad you like my little critter photos =)
Dec 29, 2007 11:26 AM #10
Rainmaker
202,803
Stephanie Edwards-Musa
thredUP.com - The Woodlands, TX
knitwit at thred UP

Hey Lisa,  very interesting!  You should add this to the Eco All Star Group. 

I can't wait to see your following posts.  I would like to know why they are disappearing. 

Dec 29, 2007 12:25 PM #11
Rainer
302,425
Terry Haugen STAGE it RIGHT! 321-956-2495
Stage it Right! - Melbourne, FL
Lisa, and the big contributor to our environment is that the wetlands filter our eventual drinking water.  I never have understood how a developer can take hundreds of acres of wetlands, develop it, and replace it with a puny retention pond, as per state and local building laws.  And now we're facing drought situations, Titusville is predicted to be out of water by 2012, and the state of Florida is doing NOTHING!
Dec 29, 2007 01:17 PM #12
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate
Terry- They should be doing something about the aquifers, AND they should have developed a way to convert sea water, decades ago!
Dec 29, 2007 02:06 PM #13
Ambassador
1,724,988
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Lisa,

It is interesting, as Realtor you are selling homes, and single family homes is number one reason that wetlands are disappearing.

Is that a catch 22?

 

Dec 29, 2007 03:14 PM #14
Rainmaker
1,544,708
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info
Sad about the wetlands.  We have to stop the destruction.  best wishes for the new year.
Dec 29, 2007 03:31 PM #15
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate
Jon- I've been saying for years that they should not be building all the homes, while imposing more and more water restrictions. They should have developed a desalinization method a long time ago!
Dec 30, 2007 11:55 AM #16
Ambassador
1,724,988
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Lisa,

Desalination is not an environment protective measure, this is simply a way to provide fresh water when there is a shortage. I think that it has its own problems, but I am not sure how serious they are.

Building less homes may be an utopia. How do you tell people that want to live in Florida, that you do not want them here? The only guaranteed outcome would be soaring prices, and whoever fights the developers do not get it. They are signing their own death sentence.

From the ecological point of view, the problem is footprint. If a 100 story tower has a footprint of 200' by 200' and if a single family home has the same footprint, you can pretty much compare their environmental impact. It is not 100% correct scientific statement, but from many points of view and many angles it is true. As for social and other costs, then there is no equality. Single family homes are the most expensive and costly to the environment. Very soon we will get to the point of fair tax, which would be that single family homes would be taxed higher than multi-family.

Even if it hurts the American dream, it would be only fair to people, and living creatures of all sorts.

Dec 30, 2007 03:48 PM #17
Rainmaker
386,684
Mark Horan
Resident Team Realty, LLC & Toni's Property Management LLC - Saint Cloud, FL
"The Resident Chef" - Resident Team Realty LLC &
Lisa- remember when a group of cypress trees represented wet lands and builders couldn't build there? Now all they have to do is build a retention pond. As Florida's population explodes, we will lose wet lands. Progress. I am also a Florida native, it's hard to swallow.
Dec 30, 2007 04:43 PM #18
Ambassador
808,469
. 4Terra Land Brokers .. 828-776-0779 Asheville NC
REAL ESTATE RESOURCES & NETWORK - Asheville, NC
What's Most Important to YOU? Call(828)-776-0779

Lisa~ 

I sure hope this post gets featured at Localism.com.
I am going to send over the link to this post to recommend that it does!
THANKS so much for your information and ...you write great stuff!

Dec 31, 2007 01:42 AM #19
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate
Jane Anne- It did =)
Dec 31, 2007 04:41 PM #20
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate
Jon- I think you know by now, my firm rule of not debating/arguing. So I'll only say one thing on your points. We don't need all the homes that have been built! The market shows that much to be obvious. The speculators are the ones who were buying and flipping more than 50% of the new construction, and all the while, our aquifers are becoming more depleted.
Dec 31, 2007 04:44 PM #21
Ambassador
1,724,988
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Lisa,

Of course, I didn't. I was under the impression that when you write a blog, you are trying to stir the pot and get people involved in the debate. How could I be more wrong?

Anyway, it is your blog, you can do as you please, that's fine.

Dec 31, 2007 06:21 PM #22
Rainmaker
595,521
Lisa Hill
Florida Property Experts - Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Beach Real Estate
Jon- No offense on my end and hopefully none on yours. I'm just not a debate person. I agree with you that we should "discuss" the different aspects of everything. And of course all comments are welcome. I personally just choose to word my opinions in a way that will never offend anyone else. But we all have different personalities and ways of doing things. That's what makes the world more interesting. Happy New Year =)
Jan 01, 2008 09:08 AM #23
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?

Rainmaker
595,521

Lisa Hill

Daytona Beach Real Estate
Ask me a question
*
*
*
*
Spam prevention

Additional Information