Kay K. Hale
Librarian and Associate Professor
at Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science
The histories of Miami and Biscayne Bay are intimately related. In
addition to food, industry,
transportation and recreation, the Bay provides a constant source of
aesthetic satisfaction to
those who live and work along its shores.
Biscayne Bay is a tropical lagoon, approximately 35 miles long and a
maximum of 8 miles wide.
It is geographically divided into three parts: North, Central and South
Bay. The North Bay is the
most urbanized, bordered on the east by barrier islands, including Miami
Beach, and including the
Miami business district. Central Bay, extending from Government Cut to
the southern limits of
Coral Gables, has been affected by bulkheading and canal discharges.
South Bay, aside from the
Cutler and Turkey Point power plants, has been less affected by human
activity and includes the
northwestern portion of the Biscayne National Park.
Over 100 years ago, Hugh M. Smith of the U.S. Commission of Fish and Fisheries was dispatched to Biscayne Bay to determine whether the region was suitable for a marine hatching and experiment station. He found that "the water of Biscayne Bay is exceedingly clear. In no part can one fail to clearly distinguish objects on the bottom when the surface is not especially rough." Since that time, however, a century of natural phenomena, development and urbanization have profoundly affected the health and character of the Bay. Dredging and filling, sewage disposal, channel and canal building, flood control practices, hurricanes, and intense development of the shoreline have profoundly altered the waters.
Information on the marine environment of Biscayne Bay is frequently
requested by students,
researchers, engineers, planners and the public. All the documents
listed are available in the
Library of the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science
(RSMAS) at the University
of Miami. Included are books, scientific articles, theses and
dissertations, book chapters,
conference proceedings, reports, videos, and government publications. The
bibliography does not
include newspaper articles, accounts of public hearings, personal
correspondence or articles from
popular boating and sports magazines. Besides nautical charts issued by
the U.S. Defense
Mapping Agency, only a few maps are cited.
The bibliography is an ongoing project which is updated regularly.
Contributions of any relevant publications not listed here would be
greatly appreciated, as would
suggestions and corrections.