Hurricane Irma leaves a legacy of destruction along the southwest coast

On September 10, 2017, Hurricane Irma grazed Florida Bay and the southwest mangrove coast before making landfall a final time at Marco Island. Hurricanes are part of the natural cycle in South Florida, and the Everglades’ ecosystems are resilient to their effects. Signs of ecological recovery from Hurricane Irma appeared in the first months following the storm. Recovery from past hurricanes provides insights into what to expect following Irma. However, Irma’s full impact will play out over an extended period of time. Therefore, a complete assessment of Irma’s impact on the Everglades must wait until the 2024 System Status Report.