Summer Heat in the Everglades

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A work crew stops for a short break and water in the parching hot sun in Everglades National Park. They are battling forests of Melaleuca trees taking over wetland prairies in the Everglades. <br />
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The invasive tree invaded 500,000 acres of South Florida wetlands before restoration began near Lake Okeechobee. South Florida Water Conservation and the Everglades National Park are embarked on the largest wetlands restoration attempted--and the most expensive.<br />
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Melaleuca (Melaleuca quinquenervia), of Australian origin, forms a dense monoculture choking out all other plant life as seeds blow across the "River of Grass." Melaleuca invasions displace native plants and animals, the tree constitutes a severe fire hazard due to volatile chemicals in its leaves, and attempts to control the weed are very costly on a per area treated basis. The management manual removal of saplings), physical methods (prescribed burns and water level management), and biological control. Chemical, physical and mechanical methods are currently being employed, with limited success and various constraints on their practicality.
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