The next time you watch a sunset from a boat on Crystal River over an endless expanse of saw grass, fish on a lake, or
hear an osprey call as you paddle a canoe down the river, think of the mudThe habitat for essential micro-organisms, is as important as water to the health of this planet. Edward S Deevey Jr
beneath the water. Without it, there would be no saw grass or fish or birds.
A spoonful of soil contains more microorganismsExtremely small organism that can only be seen using a microscope. than
the number of people on Earth.
Over 30 years ago, Edward S. Deevey, Jr., argued that mudThe habitat for essential micro-organisms, is as important as water to the health of this planet. Edward S Deevey Jr, as
the habitatThe place or set of environmental conditions in which a particular organism lives. of essential micro-organisms, is as important as
water to the health of this planet. Deevey held: “it is a common yet dangerous misapprehension: the idea that
balanced living systems consist of animals plus plants. As long as the sun shines and plants are green, it seems to
follow that animals and people have nothing to worry about. The truth, of course, is that no living system is ever
balanced without microbes”.
Water is the foundation of human existence. (Without water there is no mud?).
Scientific knowledge is meaningless unless it is widely disseminated and becomes common knowledge among the public.
The public needs to become aware in order to become involved in restoration activity. Man has upset the natural balance
of the ecosystema community of organisms, including humans, interacting with one another and the environment in which they live. and must be engaged in restoring the
balance. Sustainablecapable of lasting over time, durable. use of water resources cannot be
achieved unless resource users agree on basic principles in resource stability and availability - in the past, in the
present and in the future, with due protection and conservation measures collectively introduced.
It is futile to make judgments on the sustainability of water resources without scientific knowledge in regard to
possible natural and anthropogenicResulting from human activity variances. A
scientifically well-informed decision is important, not because the decision will always be correct, but, because the
decision can be assessed scientifically and updated to reflect new scientific findings over time. That is the true worth
of science, and a process integral to the principles of Adaptive ManagementA management process involving a defined start position and a defined objective position, whereby the progress toward the objective can be measured, in order that judgments may be made as to degree of achievement reached and the process continued in the same or a revised form, or abandoned..
An average of 150 billion gallons of rain falls each day in Florida. Another 26 billion gallons flows into the state,
mostly from rivers originating in Georgia and Alabama. Nearly 70 percent of the rain (107 billion gallons) returns to
the atmosphere through evaporationEvaporation can be defined as the process by which liquid water is converted into a gaseous state. Evaporation can only occur when water is available. It also requires that the humidity of the atmosphere be less than the evaporating surface (at 100 % relative humidity there is no more evaporation). The evaporation process requires large amounts of energy. For example, the evaporation of one gram of water at a temperature of 100° Celsius requires 540 calories of heat energy (600 calories at 0° Celsius). and plant transpirationTranspiration is the process of water loss from plants through stomata. Stomata are small openings found on the underside of leaves that are connected to vascular plant tissues.
Some dry environment plants do have the ability to open and close their stomata. Transpiration is a passive process largely controlled by the humidity of the atmospheric and the moisture content of the soil.
Of the transpired water passing through a plant only 1 % is used in the growth process. Transpiration also transports nutrients from the soil into the roots and carries them to the various cells of the plant.
(evapotranspirationCombined loss of water to the atmosphere via the processes of evaporation and transpiration). The remainder flows to rivers
or streams or seeps into the ground and some 3% recharges aquifers. Each day in Florida, 2.7
billion gallons are incorporated into products or crops, consumed by humans or livestock, or otherwise removed from the
immediate environment (consumptiveOf or pertaining to consumption; having the quality of consuming or dissipating. Consumptive uses of water include pumping water for irrigation or municipal uses, and evapotranspiration. use).
The purpose of this section of the website is to try to bridge the gap between the broader coverage of environmental
science in text books used of our high school and college students in Citrus County, and provide a focus upon local
issues. It is hoped that as students discuss with their peers, their parents and teachers, that the citizens of Citrus
County in general will also be attracted to become involved with the restoration of our vital water resources.