April 14, 2020 @ 7:00PM — 8:30PM
Phoebe Clark, FGCU will tell us about the progress and effects of the Picayune Strand Restoration Project.
The Picayune Strand Restoration Project, the first Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Project (CERP) to begin construction, is being conducted in partnership with the South Florida Water Management District. When completed, the project will restore historic water flows that benefit coastal estuaries, recharge the aquifer, and protect the water supply, while maintaining current levels of flood protection. The restoration involves plugging 48 miles of canals, removing 260 miles of crumbling roads, and constructing three major pump stations, all of which will restore more than 55,000 acres of natural habitat in an area once partially developed for an intended sprawling residential area.
Ecological benefits are already being seen at Picayune Strand as a result of the restoration work done to date. Native plants and animals are returning to the area, including the wood stork and the endangered Florida panther. By restoring the hydrology in the area, the completed project will also directly benefit the southern Gulf Coast estuaries, improving juvenile fish habitats and increasing fish and bird populations, as well as providing recreational opportunities in the area.
Phoebe Clark, FGCU Biologist who is working with Dr. Win Everham on the progress so far of this nearly completed restoration project.