Aquatic Communities of the Okefenokee Swamp
Bergstedt, Amy E.
Porter, Karen G.
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The Okefenokee Swamp lies over a perched water table on the Coastal Plain of southern Georgia. The swamp ecosystem consists of a mosaic of aquatic communities: cypress swamps, blackwater lakes, sand islands, floating peat batteries, prairies, and tree islands. It is kept in a dynamic disclimax by disturbance and hydroperiod. Nutrients, bound within refractory dissolved organic matter and peat, are released by physical processes such as drying, fire, and degradation by light. Maintenance of groundwater levels and hydroperiod is essential for the dynamic integrity of the swamp.