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Invasive Species

Invasive plant species, some encouraged by heavy nitrates in the water, are choking many springs and spring runs.

 

 
Image of Water hyacinths form floating mats in spring waters that can clog waterways and harm water quality.Zoom+ Water hyacinths form floating mats in spring waters that can clog waterways and harm water quality. © Tom Scott, Florida Geological Survey

Invasive plant species like hydrilla and water lettuce are choking many springs and spring runs. Hydrilla is a major problem in some springs growing rapidly and replacing native eelgrass and eliminating the open areas of the spring. Spirogyra and Lyngbya, native but potentially troublesome algae, grows quickly in response to the elevated nitrate levels, forming mats that smother the native aquatic vegetation on the spring floor. Control of these invasive species requires labor-intensive manual removal in some cases.

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Good Neighbors

Image of Don Bennink is helping both his business and the aquifer by using "high absorption" grasses like Tifton-85 to take up nutrients from the soil and protect the groundwater.

Read Stories about people working to protect springs. Go »

 

How You Can Help

Image of At the Citrus Country Extension demonstration garden, signs explain to visitors the principles and practices of a "spring friendly" yard while volunteers help with maintenance and getting the word out.

Steps you can take to help protect our springs. Go »

 

Learn About The Aquifer

Image of spring_flow

View an interactive presentation to learn more about our aquifer and human impacts on Florida's springs. Go »

 
 
 
My FloridaFlorida Department of Environmental Protection