Dear Florida: The Incredible Sights and Sounds

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Dear Florida: The Incredible Sights and Sounds

By Stephanie Montalvo, Lutz

Photo by Stephanie Montalvo.

Dear Florida,

How lucky are we to live here? In the winter when the rest of the country is freezing their tails off, we are enjoying the warm weather and brightly colored plumage of our feathered friends. I love living in a place filled with wildlife at your doorstep. Because Florida has incredible waterways, we are a hub for some of the most beautiful creatures on the planet. Jurassic creatures like alligators and turtles live amongst us and help keep rodents and invasive species in check. I love that I can walk out my front door and photograph a hot pink Spoonbill or watch a family of Sandhill Cranes forage through the grasses. 

Every time we mess with our waterways we destroy something precious and special and it ruins our state. I love that we can go to the ocean on two sides and to the Springs in Central Florida. I love that we have the opportunity to protect and care for these ecosystems and animals like we were meant to do. Florida’s ecosystems are a gift that if altered can never be fixed. We have seen the destruction the Army Corp of Engineers did to the Everglades. We must be smart and stop further destruction. 

We don’t need more roads. We need ecosystems in place to clean our air and water the right way, the healthy way. It is why so many people moved here: for the nature that exists. We need to work with the land we live on, not destroy it for roads. Natural systems help us in storms and hold the sand in place. Everything we clear and destroy will destroy us. 

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