Salt, or tidal, marshes are coastal wetlands rich in marine life. Hidden within the tangle of salt marsh plants, animals in various stages of life can hide from predators in spartina and other marsh vegetation. Estuaries (where salt and fresh waters mingle) provide nursery areas for at least 70 percent of Florida's important recreational and commercial fishes, shellfish, and crustaceans. It is estimated that Florida has lost at least 60,000 acres of estuarine habitat to permitted dredge and fill activities. State regulations have been enacted to protect Florida's salt marsh systems. Photo by Dawna Moore Photography.