Chapter 18 - Waterlogging and submergence: surviving poor aeration

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A permanent body of water in Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory, showing a range of species thriving in a flooded environment. Submerged tubers of Nymphaea violacea produce long underwater stems that support a floating leaf, while spectacular flowers are supported on petioles projecting from the water surface. Woody species that also exhibit flood tolerance can be seen in the background: these include the dense canopy of a freshwater mangrove (Barringtonia acutangula), a single tree (Lophostemon grandiflorum ssp. Riparius) growing in the open water and stands of river red gum (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) growing along the waterlogged banks (Photograph courtesy S. Jacobs)

After Colonel Byrd discovered and named The Great Dismal Swamp in seventeenth century America, his disenchantment was recorded in the Westover Manuscripts thus:

...the fould damps ascend without ceasing, corrupt the air and render it unfit for respiration...Never was Rum, that cordial of Life, found more necessary than in this Dirty place.

(Colonel William Byrd III (1929), a Histories of the Dividing Line Betwixt Virginia and North Carolina, North Carolina Historical Commission, Raleigh)