Fixing these Issues & Restoration's Benefits The Kissimmee River/Everglades Water Diversion Kissimmee River Restoration began in 1992. Between the 1940s and 2000s, the number of wading birds has become smaller. Recovery efforts are now underway, supported by a broad … The Everglades are part of a very large watershed that begins in the vicinity of Orlando.The Okeechobee River drains into Lake Okeechobee, a 730-square-mile (1,900 km 2) lake with an average depth of 9 feet (2.7 m).During the wet season when the lake exceeds its capacity, the water leaves the lake in a very wide and shallow river, approximately 100 miles (160 km) long and 60 miles (97 km) wide. More than 1,700 keys, or shallow-water islands rising just a few feet above sea level, lie in Florida Bay. The diversion of water to South Florida's still-growing metropolitan areas is the number one threat for the park's inhabitants. By re-channelizing the River to replicate its natural Davis outlined the problems water diversion causes in the Glades. TALLAHASSEE - State and federal agencies are working to continue a diversion of water through Everglades National Park for another 90 days, state wildlife … Everglades National Park, Florida. This restoration has been the most successful ecosystem restoration initiative to date. Photo ©Sam Thompson Introduced Species It has reached around 90 percent decrease from their original numbers . Extensive efforts were initiated in the 1990s to protect the Everglades from further degradation caused by phosphorus: This further reduces the amount of water that reaches the Everglades. Only less than 50 percent of the Everglades water remain today. Many observers have identified the Everglades as one of the most endangered of North American ecoregions as a result of clearing for agriculture, diversion of water flow, and other developments. Currently there are over 1,400 miles (2,253 kilometers) of canals and levees within the Everglades region used for water control and diversion. Now water flows through canals, locks, and dams directly to the ocean to prevent floods during high rain periods, espcially during hurricanes. The Everglades Foundation is among many area nonprofits studying the effects of human activity on the fresh water flow, and advocating efforts to restore the ecosystem. What little water that does enter the Everglades system is … Better water quality will support tourism, recreation, and wildlife, and protect the Everglades for future generations. 3. He first explained how water from Lake Okeechobee used to drain south over a broad, shallow plain to form the Everglades. The basin forms the headwaters of Lake Okeechobee and the Everglades; together they comprise the Kissimmee-Okeechobee-Everglades (KOE) system. 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