• Pa-Hay-okee Overlook

    Everglades

    National Park Florida

ENP Media Briefing on new Science Studies

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Date: January 23, 2009
Contact: Linda Friar, 305-242-7714
Contact: Fred Herling, 305-242-7704

Everglades National Park press briefing on two recently completed research studies on Florida Bay

The National Park Service anticipates releasing, in the near future, revised preliminary alternatives for the marine areas of Everglades National Park, for public review and comment as part of the park’s General Management Plan (GMP). When completed, the GMP will provide the long-range blueprint for park decision making over the next 20 or more years regarding the management of its resources and providing quality visitor opportunities.

What: Press briefing, presentations, and question and answer opportunity on two recently completed research studies. These studies have helped to guide development of the GMP’s revised marine area alternatives, followed by an optional boat tour of Florida Bay to view several prop scarred areas in the park.

When: Briefing - Thursday, January 29, 2009 10 a.m.

          Boat Tour – Thursday, January 29, 2009 12 p.m.

Due to limited space please RSVP if you are interested in attending the 10 AM presentation/discussion session and/or the 12 PM boat tour please RSVP to Fred Herling, Park Planner, at 305-242-7704 or email  by 3 PM on Wednesday, January 28, 2009.

Where: Everglades National Park Key Largo Ranger Station facility (mm 98.6 bayside)

Background:

The scientific studies are entitled:

Patterns of Propeller Scarring of Seagrass in Florida Bay: Associations with Visitor Use Factors and Implications for Natural Resource Management

Aerial Survey of Boater Use in Everglades National Park Marine Waters – Florida Bay and Ten-thousand Islands.

In brief, the propeller scarring study found that in Florida Bay, seagrass scarring is widespread and increasing, with dense scarring found in shallow depths, near all navigational channels, and around areas most heavily used by boaters. The boater use study found that boating activity has increased approximately 250% in the past twenty to thirty years throughout Florida Bay and the Gulf Coast areas of the park, and provides park managers a method for accurately measuring boating use levels in future years.

The completed studies are available on the park’s website: nps.gov/ever

Did You Know?

Sawgrass Prairie

Everglades National Park holds the largest continuous stand of sawgrass prairie in North America. Deer, apple snails, muskrats, and alligators are just some of the species wildlife that utilize this habitat for survival.