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Return to Why Are Estuaries Important? The Economy and Environment

The fishing industry depends on healthy estuaries to provide essential nursery areas for many commercially important fish and shellfish species. In Apalachacola Bay, Florida, about 60-85% of local residents make their living directly from the fishing industry, most of which is done in National Estuarine Research Reserve waters. Seafood landings from the Apalachicola Reserve are worth $14-$16 million dockside annually. At the consumer level, this represents a $70-$80 million industry. (Photo: Apalachicola NERRS site)

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