FWC enhances Lake George and Silver Glen Spring by planting eelgrass
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), in partnership with Clearwater Marine Aquarium, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Forest Service, is beginning a project to plant eelgrass, a native freshwater aquatic plant, in Lake George and Silver Glen Spring to enhance fish and wildlife habitat.
Lake George historically had thousands of acres of submersed native plants, mainly comprised of eelgrass, which provided important habitat for a variety of fish and wildlife species including manatees. However, this submersed habitat disappeared in Lake George and Silver Glen Spring following Hurricane Irma and has not re-established.
This year’s planting efforts have been scaled up from past years. Two large enclosures were built to protect more than 2 acres of lake bottom that will be planted with eelgrass. Approximately 400 feet of Silver Glen shoreline will also be planted.
Eelgrass is planted within fenced enclosures to protect the new plants until they become established. These planted areas will provide many ecological benefits and are important to the continued restoration of these systems. In addition to providing food and habitat for fish and wildlife, eelgrass also enhances water quality.
For more information about this project, contact Dan Kolterman with the FWC’s Aquatic Habitat Conservation and Restoration Section at 352-800-5024 or Dan.Kolterman@MyFWC.com.