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Project Summary Sheet
Fiscal Year 2004 Study Summary Report
Study Title: Impacts of Hydrological Restoration on Three Estuarine Communities of the Southwest Florida Coast and on Associated Animal Inhabitants
Overview & Objective(s): The overall goal is to provide baseline data on mangrove-associated fauna and on submerged aquatic vegetation in Shark River and Big Sable Creek prior to hydrological restoration upstream in the former location. Specific objectives are to: (1) quantify species composition, density, & biomass of fishes & decapod crustaceans in intertidal mangrove forests along salinity gradient in Shark River: relate these distributional patterns to hydrological & environmental factors; (2) describe the submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) of Shark River in relation to sediment & water quality parameters; (3) quantify species composition, density, & biomass of fishes & decapod crustaceans in intertidal mangrove forests and hurricane-derived intertidal mudflats in replicate creeks of the Big Sable Creek complex: relate these distributional patterns to hydrological & environmental factors; and (4) describe the population structure & habitat use of diamondback terrapins in the Big Sable Creek complex.
Status: In final year of original funding cycle. Shark River fishes: 4 yrs of data; Big Sable Creek fishes: 1.5 yrs of data; terrapins 2.5 yrs of data; SAV in Shark River: 1 yr of data. Data collection and data entry has been completed for all tasks. Data analysis and interpretation coupled with manuscript preparation is ongoing for all tasks.
Recent Products: Access database of fish species, numbers and biomass at 3 fixed sites in fringing mangrove forests along a salinity gradient in Shark River, March 2000-Apr 2004. Access database of fish species, numbers and biomass at 3 fixed forest sites and 3 fixed mudflat sites on 3 creeks in the Big Sable Creek complex, Oct 2002-Jan 2004. Excel datasets of terrapin morphological parameters, capture and re-capture locations, PIT tag numbers, genetic analysis from 2001-2003. GEER Conference 2003: two papers, 1 poster. Draft final report from Fouqurean (SAV), 8/2004. Other invited or offered presentations from McIvor, Hart: approximately 10.
Planned Products: Thesis and dissertations: Comparative ecology and population dynamics of diamondback terrapins in a saltmarsh and a mangrove dominated estuary (PhD title of Kristen Hart, Duke University, defense 12/04), Fisheries impact of hurricane-induced habitat conversion in the Big Sable Creek complex, ENP, FL (MS title of Noah Silverman, USF, defense 12/05). Peer-reviewed papers: Modification of the bottomless lift net for use in mangrove forests (in prep, Silverman & McIvor); Ecology of Mangrove rivulus (Rivulus marmoratus) in mangrove forests along Shark River, Everglades National Park (in prep, McIvor); Ecology of frillfin goby (Bathygobius soporator) in mangrove forests along Shark River, Everglades National Park (McIvor); Community structure of mangrove forest fishes along Shark River, Everglades National Park (McIvor, Kuss, and Silverman); Gross export of macrodetritus from two mangrove systems in South Florida (in draft, Yeager, Silverman & McIvor). Additionally there will be at least 1 paper each from the SAV task, another strictly relating to ENP from the terrapin dissertation, a third from the mangrove versus mudflat thesis. Factsheet: Mangrove-associated aquatic fauna of Shark River and Big Sable Creek, Everglades National Park, due 11/15/04.
Specific Relevance to Information Needs Identified in DOI's Science Plan in Support of Ecosystem Restoration, Preservation, and Protection in South Florida (DOI's Everglades Science Plan):
This study supports a primary activity of DOI in providing information to "ensure that hydrological performance targets protect threatened and endangered species and promote fish, wildlife and Park values". More specifically, tasks 1 (fishes of mangrove forests along Shark River) and 2 (submerged aquatic vegetation of Shark River) seek to provide current baseline conditions in the mangrove transition zone of the SW coast prior to hydrological modifications upstream. Restoration is occurring against a backdrop of ongoing global climate change. Task 3 (hurricane-induced habitat conversion and effect on fisheries) seeks to quantify one of the effects of GCC, i.e., increasing frequency and intensity of hurricane landfall. Finally, task 4 seeks to provide specific ecological and genetic information about listed diamondback terrapins at Big Sable Creek. Information gained under task 1 relates to another candidate species, mangrove rivulus. Our data may contribute to a reassessment of the status of this species and prevention of listing.
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
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Last updated: 04 September, 2013 @ 02:08 PM(KP)