Contact us at  gulfcoastconservancy@gmail.com

The language of good policy is made of science, sound facts, and common sense.

Saving Florida's Springs

Despite the relatively good rainfalls of 2013 and 2014, human demand on our water resources – and impact on their health – continue to grow. Everyone has heard that “we need to conserve water.” But every gallon pumped out of the Aquifer to satisfy human needs reduces the flow our springs – the heartbeat of our natural ecosystem.

Just how bad is the problem? Here’s a reading list:

  1. Florida’s Vanishing Springs, Craig Pittman http://www.tampabay.com/news/environment/water/floridas-vanishing-springs/1262988
  2. The Journey of Water,
    http://www.floridasprings.org/learn/journey/getting/
  3. Florida’s Springs: What are They Waiting For? Bob Knight
    http://www.gainesville.com/article/20090307/OPINION03/903070930
  4. Springs of Florida: Florida Geological Survey Bulletin No. 66
    http://www.dep.state.fl.us/geology/geologictopics/springs.htm

Cores and Corridors – Recommended Reading

These documents will help you gain a statewide perspective on opportunities, plans and procedures necessary to implement the latest scientific information concerning habitat preservation within Florida. They explain the North American Model of Habitat Conservation which calls for large areas of core habitat connected by corridors of sufficient width so that all species may move freely between cores

Florida Wildlife Manual

Wildlife Habitat Planning Strategies, Design Features and Best Management Practices for Florida Communities and Landowners.
Complete manual online at http://www.floridahabitat.org/.

Contains easy to understand descriptions of needs, opportunities and strategies to preserve natural habitat on a statewide basis integrating the latest knowledge. The manual was prepared by the staff of 1000 Friends of Florida and made possible by a grant from the Florida Wildlife Legacy Initiative, a program of FFWCC.

Florida Black Bear Management Plan

Final Black Bear Management Plan for Florida, Ursus americanus floridanus
Full document online here.

Contains the finalized statewide plan for Florida’s bears published in 2012. Bureaucratic format hinders readability but contains a wealth of good info. Currently, Florida has only two state species management plans: gopher tortoise and Florida panther. Completion and publication of this manual will represent a major step in providing guidance to local planning agencies, and give them tools to better plan development that has a lessened impact on wildlife habitat. Remember: Bears are an umbrella species and securing their habitat also protects an entire pyramid of smaller flora and fauna.

Florida Greenways Network

Florida’s Evolving Large-scale Ecological Greenways System
Document online here.

Highly readable explanation of the “core and corridor” concept that underlies the North American model of habitat conservation. Prepared for 1000 Friends of Florida

Critical Linkages in the Florida Ecological Greenways Network
Document online here.

Somewhat technical but still readable explanation of how an how priorities are set and "critical linkages" defined for the Florida Ecological Network. Written by Dr. Tom Hoctor of UF and Jim Wood, FL DEP Office of Greenways and Trails

Links to Visit

 

Florida 2060
Florida Population and Developed Land Projected to Double Over Next 50 Years

With close to 18 million residents, Florida already is overwhelmed with the ramifications of rampant sprawl, rapidly vanishing natural areas, and overcrowded roads. What will Florida look like in 2060, when its population is projected to reach almost 36 million?

To help address this question, 1000 Friends of Florida contracted with the University of Florida's GeoPlan Center to develop a "population distribution scenario" for the state. Read about it.

As part of this project, data was used to predict impacts on wildlife. The accompanying report, Wildlife 2060: What's at Stake for Florida is available on-line, and is a must read.