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projects > hydrologic monitoring and synthesis of existing hydrologic data in the florida panther national wildlife refuge and surrounding areas > work plan

Project Work Plan

Department of Interior USGS GE PES and ENP CESI

Fiscal Year 2007 Study Work Plan

Study Title: Hydrologic Monitoring and Synthesis of Existing Hydrologic Data in the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge and Surrounding Areas
Study Start Date: 10/01/2005 Study End Date: 12/31/2007
Web Sites: http://sofia.usgs.gov/projects/panther_refuge_hydro/
Location (Subregions, Counties, Park or Refuge): Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge
Funding Source: USGS Greater Everglades Priority Ecosystems Science (GE PES) and ENP Critical Ecosystems Studies Initiative (CESI)
Other Complementary Funding Source(s): n/a
Funding History: FY06; FY07
Principal Investigator(s): Roy Sonenshein
Study Personnel: Larry Richardson (FPNWR) Support staff in Ft. Lauderdale USGS office and Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge
Supporting Organizations: Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge
Associated / Linked Studies:

Overview & Objective(s): The biologic communities of the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge (FPNWR) and surrounding areas have been historically impacted by the changes in hydrology associated with past highway and canal construction and will be impacted by future plans for hydrologic restoration. Currently, little hydrologic data is collected in the vicinity of the FPNWR. Two continuous recording stations located up gradient in Big Cypress National Park (stations A1 and A2) are the nearest wetland stations to the FPNWR. Additional stations are located in the canals near the FPNWR. Information on current hydrologic conditions and a monitoring network are needed in order to determine the impact of the planned Picayune Strand Hydrologic Restoration on the hydrology of the area. These hydrologic changes will have effects on the threatened and endangered species as well as other biologic communities in the FPNWR.

There are two components to the hydrology of the area that have an impact on the ecology, surface water, and shallow ground water. The surface water consists of wetlands within and canals bordering the FPNWR. Canals bordering the refuge have a major impact on the hydrology in the area. The FPNWR currently maintains a hydrologic monitoring program of 8 stations (Larry Richardson, verbal communication). These hydrologic monitoring stations have not been surveyed to a vertical datum, which is required to adequately evaluate the data being collected. The survey information is required to determine the relationship between ground water and surface water in the area. Additional information needed to evaluate the hydrology of the area include stage and flow rates in the canals bordering the FPNWR.

The objectives of this project are to

  1. Inventory existing hydrologic data available in the vicinity of the FPNWR. This will include all data that can be used for determining past and current conditions.
  2. Design and install a hydrologic monitoring network for the FPNWR. The network will include continuous and intermittently monitored ground-water level and surface water stations. The network will be used to monitor hydrologic conditions within the FPNWR and to evaluate the relationship between ground water and surface water.
  3. Collect other hydrologic data as needed to assist in determining the hydrologic conditions in the area. Examples of other types of data include stable isotopes, which can be used to determine sources of water in a sample (Wilcox, Solo-Gabriele, and Sternberg, 2004), evapotranspiration data, surface and borehole geophysical data, seepage measurements (Harvey and others, 2002)
  4. Evaluate historical and current data to determine trends and baseline conditions at and in the vicinity of the FPNWR.

Specific Relevance to Major Unanswered Questions and Information Needs Identified:

This study provides the hydrologic data which will be needed to meet the following science needs and management questions from the DOI Science Plan:

  • How have water levels been altered and what are the effects of altered water levels and flows on terrestrial and freshwater wildlife habitats in the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, particularly how they have affected the spread of exotic plants, wading bird feeding and nesting success, and native plant communities?
  • What is the ecological response to hydrologic change?
  • What are the anticipated effects on the threatened and endangered species in the study area?

Status: Continuing project

Recent Products: None

Planned Products:

  • Progress report of historical data and literature review
  • Summary progress report on design of monitoring network
  • SOFIA data exchange web page with project data sets
  • Progress Report detailing data collection activities

WORK PLAN

Title of Task 1: Surveying
Task Funding:
USGS Greater Everglades Priority Ecosystems Science (GE PES) and ENP Critical Ecosystems Studies Initiative (CESI)
Task Leaders: Roy Sonenshein
Phone: 954-377-5924
FAX: 954-377-5901
Task Status (proposed or active): Active
Task priority: High
Time Frame for Task 3: October 2006 to November 2006
Task Personnel: Roy Sonenshein, USGS survey crew
Task Summary and Objectives: Survey Stations to NGVD88 using a combination of traditional surveying techniques and differential GPS equipment.

Work to be undertaken during the proposal year and a description of the methods and procedures: Differential GPS will be used to establish vertical reference marks at 9 monitoring locations, traditional surveying will be used as needed to tie in all monitoring locations to the established reference marks. Work is planned to start in September 2006 if survey crew is available. Funds from FY06 are available to complete this task.

Specific Task Product(s):

  • Progress report summarizing the results of the surveying with location and description of all reference marks to be completed by December 31, 2006

Title of Task 2: Collection and analysis of monitoring data
Task Funding:
USGS Greater Everglades Priority Ecosystems Science (GE PES) and ENP Critical Ecosystems Studies Initiative (CESI)
Task Leaders: Roy Sonenshein
Phone: 954-377-5924
FAX: 954-377-5901
Task Status (proposed or active): Active
Task priority: High
Time Frame for Task 4: October 2006 to September 2007
Task Personnel: Roy Sonenshein, FPNWR staff, USGS Ft. Myers staff
Task Summary and Objectives: Collect and process water level data for a minimum of one year

Work to be undertaken during the proposal year and a description of the methods and procedures: Continuous recording equipment will be operated for a minimum of one year. Data will be processed in the USGS NWIS database and posted on the SOFIA data exchange web site. As needed, recording equipment may be moved between stations as currently not all 18 monitoring wells are instrumented. Additional equipment may be purchased and installed if funds are available either from this project or from the FPNWR budget. FPNWR staff will be trained to operate the monitoring equipment. Following FY07, it is anticipated that the monitoring network will be turned over to the FPNWR to operate. A review of the stations will be conducted to determine redundant stations to minimize the long-term expense required to operate the network.

Specific Task Product(s):

  • SOFIA data exchange web page. Initial web page will consist of a description of the monitoring network. Monitoring data for the first 12 months of operation will be posted to the web site by September 2007.

Title of Task 3: Additional data collection
Task Funding:
USGS Greater Everglades Priority Ecosystems Science (GE PES) and ENP Critical Ecosystems Studies Initiative (CESI)
Task Leaders: Roy Sonenshein
Phone: 954-377-5924
FAX: 954-377-5901
Task Status (proposed or active): Active
Task priority: Medium
Time Frame for Task 5: October 2006 to September 2007
Task Personnel: Roy Sonenshein, USGS research staff, FPNWR staff
Task Summary and Objectives: Collect additional hydrologic and geologic data to assist in evaluating the hydrologic budget of the refuge

Work to be undertaken during the proposal year and a description of the methods and procedures: Various additional methods and data sources will be evaluated to determine if they will be useful in evaluating the hydrologic budget of the refuge. Among these methods are seepage meters, surface and borehole geophysics, stable isotopes, evapotranspiration data, and satellite imagery. Methods will be selected based on usefulness and availability of funds. Selected methods will then be used to collect additional field data and, along with any additional data sources that are located, will be used to develop a water budget for the FPNWR. The data will be evaluated and presented in a summary report.

Specific Task Product(s):

  • All data collected will be posted on the SOFIA data exchange web page and will be archived as required in other USGS databases (NWIS, log archive)
  • A summary report of data collection activities will be prepared by December 31, 2007



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Last updated: 04 September, 2013 @ 02:09 PM(KP)