The Blue Spring Boil Where Does All the Water Come From? Link to Reading and Writing Connection

Each day, from a depth of 120 FT, 104 million gallons of 72 degree water surge up from the limestone caverns below. But where does all this water come from?

 Something's boiling! Watch it Now Quick Time Quick Time/Media Player The bubbles you see in this clip are from scuba divers who love to explore the warm depths of the Boil--must be kind of like a hotub!

This water actually began as last year's rain falling many miles away in another higher part of Florida.

Going With the Flow
The Florida Peninsula has a central, higher ridge, and then it slopes or dips gradually from that central ridge down to the coast. Rainwater, falling on these high areas, sinks into the Floridan Aquifer through cracks in a "confining" or watertight layer. Pressure then builds in the Aquifer as rains continue, and the large mass of water flows slowly downhill but still underground. In openings at lower elevations, such as Blue Spring, water is eventually driven out of the ground by pressure that built up in the Aquifer below.

 Hydrolic Cycle and Groundwater Flow (Click to enlarge) If the "Boil"' pushes out 104 million gallons of water per day, then how many gallons are pushed out? a) in two hours? (Answer = 8,666,666.67 gallons in two hours) b) in two minutes? (Answer = 144,444.45 gallons in two minutes) c) in 30 seconds? (Answer = 36,111.11 gallons in thirty seconds) d) in 10 days? (Answer = 1,040,000,000 gallons in ten days) e) For comparison, estimated water use to do common things at home: -20 gallons for a bath -30 gallons for a shower -40 gallons for a load of laundry -15 gallons for your dishwasher -60 gallons to wash your car

Few fish are seen here because of the low oxygen content in the water and the absence of aquatic plants. However, after flowing about 100 yards above ground oxygen is absorbed into the water and many kinds of fish begin to appear.