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Jo Hughes is a member of the Estero Island Historic Society. The Estero Island is 7 miles long and one mile wide. The Coloosa’s built shell mounds in the area, one of which is located at Fort Myers Beach at the end of Connecticut Street. There is a house built in 1906 at the top of the mound, and it is one of the oldest buildings on the island. Fort Myers beach now owns this home. When the Spanish came to Florida, they annihilated the Indians and took over the land. They named the river Caloosa Rio, which was later changed to Caloosa Hatchee River. The first people who settled on the land after the Caloosa’s were the Corretions, who were a clan of people who came down from the North and believed that humans live within the earth. Their leader; Cyrus Steed had visions of a commune lifestyle. Not everyone agreed with that vision, so they parted ways. Cyrus suffered a head injury and died on the island, the people believed he was the Messiah and put his body in a tin bathtub to wait for his return. The health department did not allow them to do that, so the people built a tomb for him, which was later destroyed by a hurricane.

What is an estuary? Why are estuaries important for both the natural world and for humans?

Estuaries are bodies of water with fresh water entering and gives access to the ocean. They provide a safe environment for water organisms and filter sediments/ pollutants before they leak into the ocean. They also prevent storm surges and floods.

Barrier islands are, by their very nature, temporary. They shift constantly with wind and waves. Should we be building on them at all? Why or why not?

Barrier islands protect our coastlines by creating a barrier between the ocean and the mainland. they also block by destructive wave energy caused by hurricanes and storms. Though they are highly beneficial, they are quite unstable due to the rise of sea levels. We should not build on barrier islands, because it will defeat the protective purpose that they were intended to do. We should simply leave them alone.