David Biello in Scientific American:
In the 1990s the Garden of Eden was destroyed. The fertile wetlands between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers were diked and drained, turning most of 15,000 square kilometers of marsh to desert. By the year 2000, less than 10 percent of that swampland–nearly twice as big as Florida’s Everglades–remained. But reflooding of some areas since 2003 has produced what some scientists are calling the “miracle of the Mesopotamian marshes”–a return of plants, aquatic life and even rare birds to their ancestral home.