Escribano Point - More About the Habitats

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Shrub Bog

ShrubBog.jpg This plant community occupies 74% of the landcover at Escribano Point and is found in areas where fire has been excluded for many years. This includes areas that were historically wet prairie, wet flatwoods and previously logged swamps. Shrub bogs also naturally occur as a transition between swamps and fire-maintained uplands. Trees in the canopy and subcanopy include sweetbay, swamp bay, slash pine, swamp tupelo and black titi. Shrubs typically include black titi, titi, large gallberry, fetterbush, was myrtle, gallberry and red bay.

 

Scrubby Flatwoods

ScrubbyFlatwoods.jpgThe canopy layer of the scrubby flatwoods community includes sand pine, slash pine, longleaf pine, loblolly pine and sand live oak. These species, in addition to water oak, comprise the dense subcanopy. Shrubs are common and often equally interspersed with herbaceous groundcover and exposed white sands. Shrubs include sand live oak, water oak, sparkleberry, Elliot’s blueberry, dwarf huckleberry, gallberry, yaupon, gopher apple, saw palmetto and shiny blueberry.

 

Mesic Flatwoods

MesicFlatwoods.jpg Within the WMA, the flatwoods canopy is primarily slash pine, although longleaf pine occurs in some areas. These pines are widely spaced in most areas and have a sparse subcanopy of slash pine and occasional swamp tupelo, laurel oak or live oak. The shrub layer may contain tree saplings as well as yaupon, titi, gallberry, sweetbay, wax myrtle, gallberry, fetterbush, saw  palmetto, highbush blueberry and gopher apple. The herbaceous layer is dominated by wiregrass, but also contains a variety of other grasses as well as a good diversity of fall flowering species.

 

Sandhill

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Sandhill occurs on xeric sands that form the highest elevations of the site. These eastern portions of the WMA border Eglin AFB /Choctaw Outlying Landing Field. The canopy is dominated by longleaf pine, an understory of turkey oak, and a groundcover of a mixture of low shrubs and grasses. Turkey oaks dominate the subcanopy, which also includes longleaf pine, bluejack oak, and live oak. The tall shrub layer includes turkey oak, sand live oak, bluejack oak, and live oak. The short shrub layer includes dwarf huckleberry, yaupon, gopher apple, turkey oak, live oak, saw palmetto, and St. Andrew's cross. This community has received fairly frequent prescribed fire applications and retains much of its historic vegetation assemblage and structure.

 

Salt Marsh

Saltmarsh.jpg Salt marshes occur at the confluence of the Yellow River and Blackwater Bay. These large marshes are dominated by needle rush and bands of sawgrass within and on the fringes of the marsh. Shrubs are sparse, and are dominated by Carolina ash, with occasional red maple, indicating brackish water. Other herbs common in the marsh are Virginia iris, swamp dock, and arrowhead. Also observed were cinnamon fern, and goldenrod scattered throughout, and a few small patches of cattail.



FWC Facts:
The spatulate bill of the roseate spoonbill has sensitive nerve endings that help it detect prey, and the shape helps the bird move sediment and catch the prey.

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