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  South Florida CORAL REEFS


Florida Reef Scene
courtesy NOAA
National Park

Conservation of Florida's coral reefs includes:

Biscayne National Park

Originally established as Biscayne National Monument in 1968, Biscayne National Park is located in Biscayne Bay and the offshore waters along the Atlantic coast south of Miami. The boundaries were expanded in 1974, adding over 8,700 acres (35.2 square km) of land and water. The park was expanded again in 1980 and redesignated as Biscayne National Park. Currently, it includes approximately 173,000 acres (700.1 square km) of which nearly 165,000 acres (667.7 square km) are waters containing coral reefs while the remaining acreage is dry land including 42 islands. Within the park there are close to 20 threatened and
endangered species, including sea turtles, crocodiles, and manatees. This park conserves coral reefs, estuarine habitats, and keys, as well as historic sites.
For more information, visit: National Park Service

Fort Jefferson - Dry Tortugas National Park
courtesy Office of NOAA Corps Operations
Fort Jefferson- NOAA

Dry Tortugas National Park

The Dry Tortugas National Park is approximately 70 miles (112.9 km) off Key West. This park includes a group of seven islands composed of coral reefs and sand, called the Dry Tortugas. These islands were first discovered by Ponce de Leon in 1513 and named after the abundance of sea turtles or "tortugas" along with the absence of freshwater as these islands were dry. During the early 1800's, the U.S. military began the construction of a massive fort in the Dry Tortugas. However, the fort was never completed due to the invention of the rifled cannon which made this fort obsolete. In 1935, President Franklin Roosevelt set aside Fort Jefferson and the surrounding waters as a national monument. It was later redesignated as Dry Tortugas National Park in 1992 to protect marine life as well as the historical aspects of the area.
For more information, visit:
National Park Service


Threatened and Endangered Species

Introduced Species




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