Barrier Islands of the Florida Gulf Coast Peninsula

Barrier Islands of the Florida Gulf Coast Peninsula

by Dr. Richard A. Davis


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With text and hundreds of figures, charts, drawings, and color photos, this book covers the long, narrow islands that run near and all along the Gulf coast of the Florida peninsula, considered by geologists to be the most complicated barrier island system in the world. These 30 islands and inlets create a barrier along the 200-mile coast, protecting the mainland and the coastal bays from storms and heavy waves. The land on these islands is among the most expensive acres of real estate on the planet, and most of the islands are now heavily developed and populated, though some natural areas remain.

This book looks first at the geological aspects of this barrier-inlet system, which is very young in terms of the history of our planet, only about 3,000 years, appearing since the great glaciers melted and sea level reached near its present position. The great diversity in morphology of the system is amazing given the low wave energy and small tidal range of this coast. Hurricanes have had a significant impact on this coast although they are less frequent here than on most of the Gulf of Mexico. There are very few sand dunes on these flat, narrow islands. Each chapter focuses on two main factors: the type of barrier island and the level of human development on the island.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781561648085
Publisher: Pineapple Press, Inc.
Publication date: 02/28/2016
Pages: 140
Sales rank: 771,113
Product dimensions: 9.90(w) x 6.90(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Dr. Richard A. Davis Jr. was a professor of geology at the University of South Florida until 2005. He is now an emeritus distinguished university professor at USF and visiting professor/research associate at Harte Research Institute, Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi, Texas. His area of specialization is coastal geology with emphasis on beaches, barrier islands, and tidal inlets. He has written/edited 20 books and about 150 journal articles on topics of oceanography, coastal geology, stratigraphy, and sedimentology. He has been a visiting professor in Australia, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Denmark, Spain, and Germany. And he speaks and teaches workshops at universities all over the world. He holds the Shepard Medal in Marine Geology.

Table of Contents

Preface 5

Chapter 1 Introduction to Barrier Islands 8

Chapter 2 How Barrier Islands Work 23

Chapter 3 Pristine Wave-Dominated Barriers 43

Three-Rooker Bar 43

Shell Key (North Bunces Key) 44

South Bunces Key 47

Anclote Key 49

Lovers Key 56

Keewaydin Island 57

Kice Island 60

Morgan Island 60

Chapter 4 Moderately Developed Wave-Dominated Barriers 65

Mullet Key 65

Casey Key 70

Manasota Key 73

Gasparilia Island 77

Captiva Island 79

Chapter 5 Densely Developed Wave-Dominated Barriers 83

Clearwater Beach Island 83

Sand Key 86

Treasure Island 94

Longboat Key 102

Lido Key 104

Estero Island 107

Chapter 6 Pristine Mixed-Energy Barriers 113

Caladesi Island 113

Cayo Costa Island 118

Chapter 7 Moderately Developed Mixed-Energy Barriers 127

Little Gasparilla Island 127

North Captiva Island 131

Chapter 8 Densely Developed Mixed-Energy Barriers 143

Long Key 143

Anna Maria Island 150

Siesta Key 152

Chapter 9 Unusual Barriers 165

Honeymoon Island 165

Egmont Key 173

Sanibel Island 178

Marco Island 182

Conclusions 191

Important Readings 198

Figure Credits 199

Glossary 200

Index 203

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