All photographs copyright (2003-2013) by Kris H. Light

<strong>Sea Oats</strong>
<em>Uniola paniculata</em> /Grass Family
Pensacola, FL<br>
Sea Oats are so vitally important to the dune ecosystems that many communities will impose $500 fines to people who pick, dig, or otherwise damage them. These plant...
Sea Oats
Uniola paniculata /Grass Family
Pensacola, FL

Sea Oats are so vitally important to the dune ecosystems that many communities will impose $500 fines to people who pick, dig, or otherwise damage them. These plants have an extensive root system which helps hold the sand grains of the dunes, thus preventing erosion by wind and water. I doubt if these dunes or the the pier in the background at Pensacola Beach survived Hurricane Ivan's 20-foot storm surge and huge waves in September 2004.
***Update Dec. 2004 --- The pier is gone, as are miles of dunes and their protective sea oats.

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