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water resources

Lake examples

Approximately 55 permanent and ephemeral lakes and ponds have been documented on the property as well as a significant hardwood swamp and three wet prairies. Two types of permanent lake systems are found on the property, sandhill upland lakes and clastic upland lakes. Ephemeral ponds/wetlands are also scattered throughout the Station and have provided valuable research in regards to amphibian reproduction and population ecology in sandhills.

Clastic upland lakes are irregular shaped depressions or basins found in uplands. The substrates are generally clay with some organics. The water is circumneutral to slightly acidic and soft with a low mineral content. These bodies of water are lentic without significant surficial outflows. Water is usually dissipated through evaporation and transpiration, and sometimes through direct connections to deeper aquifers (FNAI and DNR 1990).

Sandhill Upland Lakes are shallow, rounded solution depressions found in sandy upland communities. The open water tends to be permanent, but levels may fluctuate dramatically with complete drying during extreme drought. These lakes are lentic with no significant surface inflows or outflows. The substrate is sand with organic deposits that increase with depth. The water is clear, circumneutral to slightly acidic, and moderately soft with a variable mineral content. These lakes are seldom eutrophic unless artificially fertilized through human activity (FNAI and DNR 1990).

Ground water research studies have also been conducted on the site by utilizing the network of 50 well heads that have been placed around Lake Barco. The Station also has three automated monitoring wells with more planned in the future.

Water Quality Monitoring
Since 2001, the water quality sampling has been conducted on 8 of the Stations lakes
(4 clastic, 4 sandhill). The data has allowed managers and researchers to follow long-term water quality trends on the Station as well as to provide a benchmark data set for comparison to other lakes in Florida. 

Copyright ©2000-2015, Ordway-Swisher Biological Station
Institute of Food & Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
 Gainesville, FL 32611