Herky Huffman/Bull Creek - Habitat and Management
Habitats provide the food, water, shelter and space animals need to thrive and reproduce. At Herky Huffman/Bull Creek WMA, most of the natural communities are in excellent condition and represent benchmark examples of native central Florida landscapes. Five species of rare plants occur here and include large-flowered rosemary, nodding pinweed, cutthroat grass, plume polypody and giant orchid. Though 17 natural community types are represented on this property, the major types are mesic flatwoods, floodplain swamp, hydric hammock and wet flatwoods.
Part of the Upper St. Johns River Basin, the WMA’s pine flatwoods, swamps and hammocks form a key part of a network of public lands that protects the ecology of the region and helps to provide a linkage between the St. Johns River, the Kissimmee River and the Lake Wales Ridge.
Prescribed fire, hydrologic restoration, and chemical and mechanical treatments for vegetation control, enhance and maintain the native upland and wetland communities, creating favorable conditions for wildlife. Diversity here ranges from game species such as northern bobwhite, wild turkey and white-tailed deer, to an abundance of rare and protected species, such as Bachman's sparrow, red-cockaded woodpecker and gopher tortoise.
In addition to the management work described here, biologists with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission rely on a wide range of techniques to ensure that natural areas throughout the state stay healthy for wildlife and inviting to visitors.