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Project Chipola River Watershed Restoration Listed Mussels and Black Bass Initiative
The Chipola River Watershed (HUC # 03130012) is located in northwest Florida/southeast Alabama and includes parts of Jackson, Calhoun, Gulf, Washington and Bay Counties in Florida and Geneva and Houston Counties in Alabama. Some of the smaller tributaries that encompass the Chipola River watershed include: Chipola River Dead Lakes, Spring Creek, Muddy Branch and Otter Creek (subunit 020, 050). The Chipola River Watershed traverses over 100 miles through 812,800 acres with 200,000 acres being utilized in crop production, which is vital to the economy of the region and is the primary socio-economic resource. The Chipola River is defined by Northwest Florida Water Management District as a major Florida river. It originates from freshwater springs in the upper watershed and accounts for approximately 20% of the waters to the Apalachicola River, which is the largest river in Florida. High base flow in Chipola River is supported by over 63 known Floridan aquifer springs. The Chipola River is defined by Florida Department of Environmental Protection as an “Outstanding Florida Waterbody”. However, threats have been identified that could degrade water quality, reduce habitat, or negatively impact rare or imperiled species within the Chipola River watershed. In the past three decades, nitrate concentrations in spring waters have increased substantially in northern and central Florida. Jackson Blue, a tributary to the Chipola and first magnitude spring has the second highest concentration of nitrates of any spring in Florida. The Chipola River and its subunits Dead Lakes (WBID 51B), Muddy Branch (WBID 175) and Otter Creek are 303(d) listed due to agricultural non-point source pollution within the watershed area (EPD 305b report). A great diversity of habitats exist within the watershed from xeric upland longleaf pine forests, to bottomland hardwood swamps, freshwater wetlands, numerous natural springs, and meandering creeks with multiple tributaries. These habitats support rich animal communities with several hundred species of fish and wildlife. There are six federally threatened and endangered mussels species that occur within the Chipola River i.e., oval pigtoe, fat three-ridge, Chipola slabshell, Gulf moccasinshell, purple bankclimber, and shinyrayed pocketbook. The Chipola River is also a managed resource for striped bass and the unique shoal bass fishery. Other threatened and endangered species include: Amphibians & reptiles- American alligator, eastern indigo snake and flatwoods salamander; Fish; Gulf sturgeon; Birds; Arctic peregrine falcon, southeastern kestrel, bald eagle, wood stork, red-cockaded woodpecker; Mammals: i.e. Indiana bat and gray bat. Chipola plants listed on the state or federal endangered list include Marianna columbine, sicklepod, and Apalachicola wild indigo. Endangered and threatened species under serious threat from habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation have been documented and a watershed based plan of action should be developed and initiated for their recovery. A Chipola River watershed partnership between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) have been initiated since 2006. The purpose was to develop and lead a research-based platform for environmental restoration and conservation. The Service, along with FWC, West Florida RC&D; Council and others developed a Chipola River Watershed Management Plan (CRWMP) to achieve management and conservation of fish and wildlife resources. This proposal is for the next steps toward management activities under the CRWMP.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project Troff document Deadman's Island Restoration Project
Lead by the City of Gulf Breeze, this project restored coastal barrier habitat on Deadman's Island.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project Troff document FISH Preserve Habitat Restoration Project
The Florida Institute For Saltwater Heritage (FISH) is restoring the “kitchen”, an important fisheries habitat for the section of shallow Sarasota Bay bottom south of Cortez. For villagers during the Depression, the kitchen provided food for the tables of their struggling families and was critical to their survival. In 1999, FISH raised money through community festivals to purchase 100 acres of environmentally-sensitive waterfront property that was slated for large scale development immediately east of the village. This historically-significant area became known as the FISH Preserve and is one of the last remaining undeveloped parcels on northern Sarasota Bay.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project Troff document GTMNERR Community Oyster Shell Recycling and Living Reef Construction Project
This project established an oyster shell recycling program for St. Johns County, Florida, constructed a living shoreline, and planted spartina grass within the boundaries of the new reef to further protect the shoreline and provide nursery habitat for marine species at the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project chemical/x-pdb Improving Management of Seagrass Resources through Restoration and Assessment
Lead by the Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough City, this project will manage seagrass beds through creating a poll n troll zone to reduce seabed scaring, as well as testing different grass restore methods.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project North Peninsula State Park Saltmarsh Restoration
This project will create a healthy, productive saltmarsh habitat (9 acres, including complete restoration of 2 acres of historical marsh habitat filled with spoil as a result of dredge activities and enhancement of 7 acres of saltmarsh) in North Peninsula State Park, Volusia County, Florida.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project Oyster Reef Shoreline Restoration and Stabilization, MacDill AFB, FL
Over the past decade, the eastern shoreline of MacDill AFB has eroded, resulting in loss of native plant species such as black mangroves, palms, and 100-year-old live oaks. A five-phase project to stabilize the shoreline is creating a series of oyster reefs along undeveloped shoreline. The resultant oyster and mussel colonies will filter water and provide valuable habitat for fish and other aquatic resources. The reduced wave energy and accumulated sediment will encourage growth of native marsh grasses and mangroves, which will further stabilize the shoreline and improve the habitat.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project Restoration of Essential Habitats for Juvenile Tarpoon and Snook
Habitat loss and degradation are major threats to coastal fisheries, especially alterations of freshwater flow into estuarine habitats. This project will restore natural topography and hydrology to 229 acres of coastal land that includes juvenile habitat for economically and recreationally important tarpon and snook. Monitoring of water quality and fishes within mangrove creeks will quantify the changes resulting from restoration. An established education program will be used to disseminate project results to the public, and the project site will be protected and managed as a public park and nature preserve in perpetuity. This project is currently on-going.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project Restoring Intertidal Oyster Reefs in Mosquito Lagoon
This project, lead by the Brevard Zoo, will increase acreage of intertidal oyster reef and assist in wake reduction.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B
Project Riparian habitat restoration for listed freshwater mussels in the Ochlockonee River Basin GA/FL
This project will restore riparian habitat for listed freshwater mussels in the Ochlockonee River Basin, within Georgia and Florida.
Located in Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B