Webb, Frederick J., Jr. (ed.) / Proceedings of the Nineteenth Annual Conference on Wetlands Restoration and Creation : May 14-15, 1992
Patrick, Sandra L.
Monitoring at Hookers Prairie reclamation site, pp. 121-144 PDF (10.0 MB)
Monitoring at Hookers Prairie Reclamation Site Sandra L. Patrick IMC FERTILIZER P.O. Box 867 Bartow, Florida 33830 Abstract IMC Fertilizer, Inc. (IMCF) was required to create 125 acres of wetlands to fulfill conditions of Florida Department of Environmental Regulation (FDER) Permit No. 530862379. This permit required mitigation for mining 96 acres at IMCF's Hooker's Prairie site, as well as stipulations for semi-annual monitoring of the created wetland to evaluate the success of the mitigation actions. The 125-acre created wetland was constructed and planted in early 1990. The wetland consists of an emergent marsh section (65 acres) concentrated on the south, and a forested wetland zone (50 acres) on the north, with an extension of both zones extending north along the east side of the reclamation unit. Two (2) meandering stream systems (10 acres) were also designed to restore Whiskey Store Creek on the west end, and an unnamed tributary at the northeast end of the system. After grading, approximately six (6) inches of organic topsoil, stored from the original covering of the site, was spread over the site. Approximately 660,000 herbaceous plants and 35,000 trees were planted during the first six (6) months of 1990. IMCF will monitor the status of the mitigation area and success of reclamation efforts until the determination of a successful restoration has been made by FDER. Monitoring will be made qualitatively on a semi-annual basis and quantitatively every year. Tree cover, density, diameter at breast height (DBH), frequency of occurrence of plants and trees, and diversity of species are all calculated during the yearly report. The site is currently two years old and the second annul monitoring report was completed November, 1991. Herbaceous vegetation increased in coverage by more than 50% over the first year's results in the marsh system and average cover was about 4% greater. Herbaceous cover in the other two systems also increased significantly. After the second year of monitoring the forested system, survival and growth of the planted trees was rather low. Abnormally high water levels in the mitigation area during 1991 probably enhanced the establishment of Carolina willow trees and lowered the survival of the desirable woody species. In order to bring the site back to FDER standards, the site is currently being replanted with about 20,000 new trees. Water levels are being maintained at a lower level to ensure the survival of these trees. Close monitoring of the site should reveal the undesirable species migrating to deeper water, establishment of the newly planted trees, and increase 121
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