projects > interrelation of everglades hydrology and florida bay dynamics to ecosystem processes and restoration in south florida > 1999 proposal
Interrelation of Everglades Hydrology and Florida Bay Dynamics to Ecosystem Processes and Restoration in South Florida
Project Proposal for 1999
Geographic Area: south Florida
Project chief: (Team Coordinator) Raymond W. Schaffranek
Program(s): Integrated Natural Resource Science (INATURES) Program
Project objectives and strategy: The SICS project is producing a comprehensive model to simulate hydrological condition in Taylor Slough and the northeastern embayments of Florida Bay. The goal of this Ecological Synthesis project will be to develop historical datasets of key biotic components within the SICS study area to link to the output of the hydrological models. The primary datasets will concern change in vegetative communities within the SICS study area over time. Numerous studies have measured vegetative composition (species, density, biomass) of the various communities in the SICS area (see bibliography). Furthermore, vegetation change has been documented within the coastal mangrove fringe and the marsh communities on time scales relevant to the SICS hydrological modeling effort. Additionally there are several longterm datasets regarding faunal components of the SICS area (wading birds, freshwater and estuarine fish) which can also be used in the synthesis effort. We propose to develop datasets concerning long term vegetative and faunal change within the SICS region. These will be related to output from the hydrological model in both ãhindcastä and ãforecastä modes. An example of an expected analysis will be to examine longterm vegetative change in the main CSSS area in response to hydrology. This area is of special concern in the Restudy. This effort will also provide for tests and validation/verification of the CSSS component of the ATLSS program. The first objective of this ecological synthesis will be to summarize and analyze historical biotic data to produce datasets capable of being "meshedä with the hydrological model. The second objective is to produce relationships between the various hydrological parameters and biotic components of the system. In addition to producing peer-reviewed publications by individual scientists in relevant disciplinary journals, a synthesis document will be produced jointly with the hydrology component of this research. In the first year, compilation of relevant biotic datasets will be completed. In the second year we will relate these biotic datasets to the output of the hydrological model in both hindcast and forecast modes. This will include producing common datasets and products for publication, integration of biotic and hydrologic studies, and generation of draft synthesis report components for scientific review and editing. The second and third years will be spent with detailed syntheses of biotic relationships to hydrology. The final report which will incorporate ecological and biotic components of the system will be completed, in conjunction with the hydrology component at the end of the third year.
Potential impacts and major products: The dependence of changes in the flora and fauna of the SICS study area on hydrology will be explored in this research, modeling and synthesis effort. Importantly, we will attempt to resolve variation which is ãnaturalä and variation which is a result of ãmanagementä and thus can be controlled or altered. Analyses will couple the hydrological and ecological components. Management concerns for the biotic resources of the SICS area include: 1) decreased freshwater inflow into northeastern Florida Bay leading to increased salinity; 2) shifting water castward (to the C-111) such that portions of the bay may in fact be fresher; and, 3) altering the timing and amount of water delivered to Taylor Slough; which changes vegetative communities, particularly the short hydroperiod, Muhlenburgia prairies needed by the CSSS. The refereed journal papers and synthesis document will provide needed information to the resource management community concerning the relationships of the biotic resources of this critical region of Everglades NP with the hydrological forcing functions which are under management control.
Collaborators, clients: Biological investigations within the SICS region are currently being undertaken by a variety of local, state, and federal agencies, including: Dade Envirommiental Resources Management, Florida Game and Freshwater Fish Commission, Florida Marine Research Institute, South Florida Water Management District, National Marine Fisheries Service, Fish & Wildlife Service, National Park Service, the Biological Resources Division of USGS, and universities such as the University of Florida, Florida International University and the University of Miami. Non-governmental organizations such as the National Audubon Society and Nature Conservancy also conduct biological investigations monitoring within the project area. The Nationa1 Park Service provides funding via the Critical Ecosystems Studies Initiative in addition to logistical support. Information developed through this synthesis effort will benefit all of these groups. Additionally, all groups interested in the south Florida ecosystem restoration (tourists, farmers, those in the hospitality industry, residents) will be helped by the results derived in this synthesis.
PROJECT SUPPORT REQUIREMENTS
Required expertise for which no individual has been identified:
Major equipment/facility needs:
Craighead, F.C. 1971. The Trees of south Florida, Vol. 1. University of Miami Press. 189pp.
Craighead, F.C. & V.C. Gilbert. 1962. The effects of Hurricane Donna on the vegetation of south Florida. Quart. J. Fla. Acad. Sci. (now Florida Scientist): 25: 1-28.
Davis, J.H. Jr. 1940. The ecology and geologic role of mangroves in Florida. Papers of the Tortugas Laboratory, 32: 303-412.
Egler, F.F. 1952. The southeast saline Everglades vegetation, Florida and its management. Vegetatio Acta Geobotanica (now Vegetatio), 3: 213-265.
Enos, P. 1989. Islands in the bay - a key habitat of Florida Bay. Bull. Mar, Sd. 44: 365-386.
Herndon, A. & D. Taylor. 1986. Response of Mublenbergia Prairie to Repeated Burning: Changes in Above-ground Biomass. South Florida Natural Resources Center, Everglades National Park, Report SFRC-86/05
Krauss, P. 1987. Old Field Succession in Everglades National Park. South Florida Natural Resources Center, Everglades National Park. Report SFRC-87103.
Moeder, J.F., M.S. Ross, G. Telesnicki, P.L. Rniz & J.P. Shah. 1996. Vegetation analysis in the C-111 / Taylor Slough Basin. Final Report to the South Florida Natural Resources Center, Everglades National Park Contract C4244.
Small, J.K. 1904. Report upon further explorations of southern Florida. J. NY Botanical Garden 5:157-164.
Small, J.K. 1907. Explorations of south Florida. J. NY Botanical Garden 8: 23-28.