nutrient inputs along coastal transects within Everglades National Park, Florida
NUTRIENT INPUTS ALONG COASTAL TRANSECTS WITHIN EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK, FLORIDA
From the First National Conference on Ecosystem Restoration (NCER), December 6-10, 2004, Orlando, Florida
INTRODUCTIONIn October 2003, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) initiated a project to assess flow, salinity, and nutrients along transects from the freshwater wetlands towards the coastal areas of northeastern Florida Bay and the southwestern coast of Everglades National Park (ENP). The Coastal Gradients Project is comprised of ten surface-water monitoring stations and three co-located water-quality platforms to monitor nutrients. The water-quality stations are located along estuarine rivers where no continuous nutrient information was previously available. For example, a new surface-water/water-quality station was constructed upstream of North River near the freshwater transition zone to compliment the existing downstream surface-water station. An additional water-quality platform was constructed at the downstream North River station. These stations will be used to assess nutrient inputs from the freshwater wetlands through the mangrove zone and into Whitewater Bay.
METHODSIndividual water samples for total phosphorus and total nitrogen are collected over 3-day periods (sub-sample every eighteen hours) using automatic samplers. Samples bottles are pre-treated with sulfuric acid (H2SO4) and shipped on ice to the USGS National Water Quality Laboratory (NWQL) in Denver, Colorado every 21 days. Total phosphorus analyses are performed following Environmental Protection Agency method 365.1 (reporting limit 0.004 mg/L), and total nitrogen analyses are performed following the USGS Kjeldahl digestion method (reporting limit 0.10 mg/L). During field trips to service the automatic samplers, multiple vertical samples are collected for the following constituents: total phosphorus, ortho-phosphorus, total nitrogen (ammonia + organic), nitrite, nitrite + nitrate, and ammonia.
Nutrient data is currently being collected by the USGS at the following locations:
SUMMARYThese data will be available on the USGS South Florida Information Access (SOFIA) web page (http://sofia.usgs.gov/). The USGS water-quality network is a small component of a larger water-quality effort led by South Florida Water Management District and Florida International University. An expanded, long term water-quality network will examine nutrient inputs from the freshwater Everglades to Florida Bay and the Gulf of Mexico and assess the quality of coastal waters as upstream hydrologic systems are restored under the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP).
U.S. Geological Survey
SOFIA Project: Coastal Gradients of Flow, Salinity and Nutrients
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
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Last updated: 15 January, 2013 @ 12:43 PM (KP)