THE CANOPY of the mangrove forest/swamp intertwines like a maze and creates great resting-places for birds, animals and insects.
The leaves of the mangroves and buttonwoods form a rich detritus, loaded with nutrients, that tends to stay within the swamp because of the slow water flow through the tangled roots. It is the basis of the food chain that makes mangroves worldwide the most productive wetlands we know of.
A raccoon was accustomed to sleeping its day away in a treetop similar to this, about twenty yards from this tree. It was nearly always there when we came by. Unhappily, the tree succumbed to one of the September, 2004 hurricanes and the 'coon has moved on.