Geology of the Barley Barber Swamp
| What is Caloosahatchee marl | Benefits
The surface soils on the eastern side of Lake Okeechobee, including
the Barley Barber Swamp, are of very recent geological origin. Beneath
these soils, Caloosahatchee marl is found.
This geological formation was formed during the Pleistocene epoch
(1.5-3 million years ago) making it one of the youngest geological
formations in the U.S.
What is Caloosahatchee marl
Caloosahatchee marl is a product of shallow marine sedimentation
and consists of clay, silt, sand and shell fragments deposited in
layers, which are locally hardened into limestone.
Benefits to man
The wetlands of South Florida are important not only as habitat
for a wide variety of plants and animals, but also for their benefit
to man. The rainwater that fills the bowl-shaped wetlands during
the rainy season slowly percolates through the soil where it is
filtered and purified. It then enters the underground aquifer, which
serves as our drinking water supply. Refer to the illustration below
to see the water patterns.