The Alachua County Environmental Protection Department (EPD) invites the public to celebrate World Wetlands Day on Saturday, February 2, 2019, and encourages residents to participate in any of the following events celebrating wetlands in Alachua County.
8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Ranger led tour at Sweetwater Wetlands Park hosted by the City of Gainesville’s Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department
9 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Family birding and wetland walk at Paynes Praire La Chua Trail hosted by the Alachua Audubon Society and Friends of Paynes Prairie
9 a.m. to noon
Field trip to the Stormwater Ecological Enhancement Project (SEEP) hosted by the University of Florida Wetlands Club
3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Sunset walk at Barr Hammock – Levy Prairie hosted by Alachua County’s Parks and Conservation Lands and Environmental Protection Departments
Alachua County EPD Director Chris Bird explains, "In addition to functioning as nature’s kidneys by filtering water, wetlands are helping to make our landscapes more resilient to the effects of climate change such as extreme flooding and extended droughts."
Wetlands provide many environmental, social, and economic benefits. These benefits include floodwater storage, protection from more frequent and extreme weather events caused by climate change, pollution control, drinking water recharge, fish and wildlife habitat, recreation, and tourism. They also create a sense of place. Alachua County contains at least 26 lakes totaling over 46,429 acres and has around 100 square miles of wetlands, or about 10% of the County's land area. Through a combination of land acquisition of sensitive habitats and strong wetland protection regulations, wetland impacts in Alachua County have been largely avoided.
View the flyer with details on World Wetlands Day events in Alachua County.
For more information about wetlands protection in Alachua County, visit the Alachua County EPD website or contact Chris Bird at 352-264-6800.