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jerry jackson
Photographed by Bette Jackson

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Source: Sinkholes 1

Length of Segment: 00:01:11

Hi, I'm Dr. Jerry Jackson, out with the wild things. Sinks, or sinkholes, are holes on the Earth's surface where underlying rock has collapsed. Water collects in sinkholes and seeps back into the underground aquifer that provides much of our drinking water and the source of water for Florida springs. In an otherwise relatively flat state, sinks provide dimples on the surface and windows to the world below. Some of Florida's most unique habitats are associated with sinks and several sinks have been protected as state or private parks or recreational areas. Sinks form in two ways. Sometimes currents of water flowing through the limestone foundation of Florida hollow out a passageway to the point that the roof is eroded away and caves in. Such sinks often leave sides showing the limestone architecture and geological history of our state, often revealing the entrances of caves. In other cases, surface water erodes and dissolves limestone near the surface, and the surface simply settles in, leaving an increasing depression in the earth. Such subsidence can continue to occur for millennia, growing in extent as well as in depth over time.

'With the Wild Things' is produced at the Whitaker Center in the College of Arts and Sciences at Florida Gulf Coast University. For 'The Wild Things', I'm Dr. Jerry Jackson.

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