natgeotravel Photos by @CarltonWard // Here’s a time lapse of yesterday’s sunset in Ten Thousand Islands National Wildlife Refuge, where the Everglades meets the Gulf of Mexico. South Florida boasts the largest contiguous protected mangrove ecosystem in the Western Hemisphere. On World Mangrove Day, let’s commit to protecting and restoring more of this endangered ecosystem. Throughout the world, mangroves are critical for fisheries, wildlife, and local communities. Mangroves also help combat climate change.