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Re: Ichtucenee springs/Santa Fe river



Tom, the recent posts regarding your exploration of local rivers (local to
you, that is) have me GREEN with envy. I especially liked the comment you
made in the last one about the park system encouraging the public to think
more kindly about aquatic plants - far too often aquatic plants get treated
as noxious weeds.

I've been encouraged by the efforts of the Metro Parks department here -
they are actually trying to "bring back the Don", a local river that was at
one time many years ago a pristine watercourse through the heart of the
city. It had become a moving cesspool with absolutely no life above
bacteria. Concerted efforts by both local governments and concerned citizens
is slowly turning things around. From my apartment, I can see a new series
of ponds (they had been there years ago but got filled in by garbage over
the years) that are being planted with native water plants and have become
home to waterfowl, fish and mammals (I saw a muskrat in one last week). But
there is a long way to go before the whole river system is "healthy" again -
I certainly wouldn't want to float down the Don on an inner-tube. I visited
a local wild flower preserve the other day that is in the Don watershead and
enjoyed a few minutes admiring the aroma of some beautiful native
waterlilies. I think that next year I'll try and get involved with the
citizen's groups that are helping out by removing non-natives and
encouraging natives to repopulate the area.

But there is nothing here even remotely as nice as the localities you have
access to, at least as far as the variety of aquatic plants is concerned.

James Purchase
Toronto