I stand-up paddle board and surf almost every day, and I'm seeing far more bull sharks than I saw during the 13 years I was a fishing guide.
Randy Wayne-White
Author & local resident
Randy Wayne-White


Randy Wayne-White 2

Randy Wayne-White
Author & local resident

Randy Wayne-White saw a noticeable visual difference in area waters as well as a different smell of the water that suggested to him that fresh water was being pumped into our area in amounts not experienced in his time here. The water possibly contained commercial nutrients, such as phosphorous, which might have catalyzed a decrease in water visibility.

But, since then, Randy has noticed a marked improvement in water quality. One indicator, he says, may be the vast amount of live scallops he now sees on the grass flats in Pine Island Sound. "I stand-up paddle board and surf almost every day, and I'm also seeing far more bull sharks than I saw during the thirteen years I was a fishing guide. The number of tarpon, snook and mackerel I see also is encouraging."

Randy says the water quality in the area is consistently compromised by effluent from the sugar cane industry. He also believes that "environmentalist" doomsayers do an equal disservice to Florida by perverting data to serve their own cause at the expense of accuracy -- and the tourism industry.

A resident of Sanibel and a frequent boater, Randy sees himself as an environmentalist who is forward-thinking. He expresses a guarded optimism at the changes he's observed regarding the area's water quality, and he supports continued efforts to address the problems so that water quality improvements continue.

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Stories From Your Neighbors

One way to truly understand the impact that freshwater releases from Lake Okeechobee are having on Lee County is to hear your neighbors’ experiences. Those who live on or near the Caloosahatchee River are really seeing the effects first-hand. Here are their stories.

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Related Links

South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force:
http://www.sfrestore.org

South Florida Water Management District:
http://www.sfwmd.gov

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Glossary

Phosphorus [P]:
An element or nutrient required for energy production in living organisms; distributed into the environment mostly as phosphates by agricultural runoff and life cycles; frequently the limiting factor for growth of microbes and plants.

Blue-Green Algae:
A type of algae natural to our area that blooms in the climatic and nutrient conditions it finds favorable.

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