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Southern Swamps

Southern Swamps

The Florida Everglades, or "Grassy Waters" as it was called by the Native Americans, is a vast prairie of sawgrass. Within and surrounding this freshwater marsh are islands of hardwood trees called hammocks, palmetto pine scrub, cypress heads, and coastal mangroves, each a natural and distinct community in itself.

In this semi-tropical environment, there are annual wet and dry seasons, which shape the life cycles of the region's plants and animals.

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Alligator Snapping Turtle Southern Swamps

Alligator Snapping Turtle

Macrochelys temmincki

Biome: Southern Swamps

Classification: Reptiles

Biography: The alligator snapping turtle is the largest freshwater turtle in North America. Primitive in appearance, it can be recognized by its large, heavy head, and the three rows of spiky ridges along its massive shell. It is sometimes confused with the common snapping turtle,... More >

American Alligator Southern Swamps

American Alligator

Alligator mississippiensis

Biome: Southern Swamps

Classification: Reptiles

Biography: American alligators are important members of their ecosystem, and are regarded as keystone species. Many animals are affected by their existence. Young alligators are prey for wading birds, turtles, snakes, mammals, and larger alligators. Alligators over 4' are at the top... More >

Barred Owl Southern Swamps

Barred Owl

Strix varia

Biome: Southern Swamps

Classification: Birds

Biography: A barred owl is the second largest owl in Pennsylvania, surpassed only by the great horned owl in size. It is easily recognized by its stocky body, large dark brown eyes, and the puffy round head with no ear tufts. The horizontal bars on the throat and upper breast, and... More >

Corn Snake Southern Swamps

Corn Snake

Elaphe guttata guttata

Biome: Southern Swamps

Classification: Reptiles

Biography: Corn snakes are excellent climbers and are often found high in trees searching for nesting birds. Their common name originated when farmers would see them around their corncribs and silos. They are easily recognized by the orange and grey pattern on their backs, and by the... More >

Cottonmouth Southern Swamps


Agkistrodon piscivorus

Biome: Southern Swamps

Classification: Reptiles

Biography: This venomous snake is named for the white lining of its mouth which flashes open in a defensive display when threatened. Often confused with harmless water snakes, the cottonmouth can be identified by its heavier body, thick, blocky head, vertical pupils, and the... More >

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