Maintaining Tree Islands in the Everglades

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Maintaining Tree Islands in the Everglades Name Institutional Affiliation Date The article in question discusses the changes that have occurred in the Tree Islands. These are a group of islands that are on the strip of Florida’s peninsula (Wetzel et al., 2005). The area is covered by vegetation and receives a high annual precipitation level. However, some of the islands have already disappeared. The changes in the hydrological patterns of the area are the chief cause of the changes. Currently, there is a lot of evapotranspiration that occurs from the trees in the area. This creates a deficit in its underground water levels in comparison to nearby marshlands. When this happens, water from the nearing environs flows into the Tree Islands together with dissolved minerals. Evapotranspiration does not take away minerals from the soil. On the contrary, it makes the minerals more concentrated. Together with other events such as deposition from birds and plants, the Tree Islands have an increased level of Phosphorus(Wetzel et al., 2005). Excessive availability of one nutrient limits the availability of other nutrients. It also changes the chemical characteristics of the soil. This has resulted in vegetation death and consequently the disappearance of various islands. A biogeochemical hotspot is an area that has a relatively higher concentration of various minerals in comparison to the surrounding areas. This is mostly caused by a convergence of mineral pathways in an area. For the Tree Islands, this is believed to be a result of the underground flow of water. Evapotranspiration caused a subsurface water gradient which increases the rate at which water flows from the

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