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A geological overview of Florida ( FGS: Open file report 50 )
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 Material Information
Title: A geological overview of Florida ( FGS: Open file report 50 )
Series Title: ( FGS: Open file report 50 )
Physical Description: 78 p. : maps ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Scott, Thomas M
Florida Geological Survey
Publisher: Florida Geological Survey
Place of Publication: Tallahassee
Publication Date: 1992
 Subjects
Subjects / Keywords: Geology -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Thomas M. Scott.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (p. 73-78)
General Note: Cover title.
Funding: Digitized as a collaborative project with the Florida Geological Survey, Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
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Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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The author dedicated the work to the public domain by waiving all of his or her rights to the work worldwide under copyright law and all related or neighboring legal rights he or she had in the work, to the extent allowable by law.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 001754170
oclc - 26605805
notis - AJG7159
System ID: UF00001048:00001

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Table of Contents
    Title Page
        Title Page 1
        Title Page 2
    Introduction
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
    Geomorphology
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 9
    Lithostratigraphy and hydrostratigraphy
        Page 12
        Page 11
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
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        Page 25
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        Page 50
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        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
    References
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Copyright
            Main
        Page 73
Full Text











State of Florida
Department of Natural Resources
Virginia B. Wetherell, Executive Director




Division of Resource Management
Jeremy A. Craft, Director




Florida Geological Survey
Walter Schmidt, State Geologist and Chief





Open File Report No. 50






A GEOLOGICAL OVERVIEW OF FLORIDA


By

Thomas M. Scott


Florida Geological Survey
Tallahassee
1992









Qfc



SCIENCE
LIBRARY









A GEOLOGICAL OVERVIEW OF FLORIDA


By
Thomas M. Scott, P.G. #99

Introduction

The State of Florida lies principally on the Florida Platform.

The western panhandle of Florida occurs in the Gulf Coastal Plain

to the northwest of the Florida Platform. This subdivision is

recognized on the basis of sediment type and depositional history.

The Florida Platform extends into the northeastern Gulf of Mexico

from the southern edge of the North American continent. The

platform extends nearly four hundred miles north to south and

nearly four hundred miles in its broadest width west to east as

measured between the three hundred foot isobaths. More than one-

half of the Florida Platform lies under water leaving a narrow

peninsula of land extending to the south from the North American

mainland.

A thick sequence of primarily carbonate rocks capped by a

thin, siliciclastic sediment-rich sequence forms the Florida

Platform. These sediments range in age from mid-Mesozoic (200

million years ago [mya]) to Recent. Florida's aquifer systems

developed in the Cenozoic sediments ranging from latest Paleocene

(55 mya) to Late Pleistocene (<100,000 years ago) in age (Figure

1). The deposition of these sediments was strongly influenced by

fluctuations of sea level and subsequent subaerial exposure.

Carbonate sediment deposition dominated the Florida Platform until

the end of the Oligocene Epoch (24 mya). The resulting Cenozoic

carbonate sediment accumulation ranges from nearly two thousand


UNIVERSITY Of FLORIDA LIBAARIES









feet thick in northern Florida to more than five thousand feet in

the southern part of the state. These carbonate sediments form the

Floridan aquifer system, one of the world's most prolific aquifer

systems, regional intra-aquifer confining units and the sub-

Floridan confining unit. The sediments suprajacent to the Floridan

aquifer system include quartz sands, silts, and clays

(siliciclastics) with varying admixtures of carbonates as discrete

beds and sediment matrix. Deposition of these sediments occurred

from the Miocene (24 mya) to the Recent. The Neogene (24 mya to

1.6 mya) and Quaternary (1.6 mya to the present) sediments form the

intermediate aquifer system and/or confining unit and the surficial

aquifer system (Figure 1).



Geologic History

Florida's basement rocks, those rocks older than Early

Jurassic (>200 mya), are a fragment of the African Plate which

remained attached to the North American Plate when the continents

separated in the mid-Mesozoic. This fragment of the African Plate

provided the base for the development of a carbonate platform which

included the Bahama Platform and the Florida Platform (Smith,

1982). The Florida Straits separated the Bahama Platform from the

Florida Platform by the beginning of the Late Cretaceous

(approximately 100 mya) (Sheridan et al., 1981). Carbonate

sediments dominated the depositional environments from the mid-

Mesozoic (approximately 145 mya) in southern and central Florida

and from the earliest Cenozoic (approximately 62 mya) in northern

and the eastern panhandle Florida. Carbonate sedimentation








PANHANDLE FLORIDA


SYSTEM SERIES LITHOSTRATIGRAPHIC UNIT HYDROSTRATI-
GRAPHIC UNIT


OUARTERNARY HOLOCENE
---- UNDIFFERENTIATED
PLEISTOCENE-HOLOCENE SURFICIAL
PLEISTOCENE SEDIMENTS AQUIFER
SYSTEM

TERTIARY CITRONELLE FORMATION
PUOCENE MICCOSUKEE FORMATION
COARSE CLASTICS

ALUM BLUFF GROUP
PENSACOLA CLAY INTERMEDIATE
INTRACOASTAL FORMATION CONFINING
UNIT
MIOCENE HAWTHORN GROUP

BRUCE CREEK LIMESTONE
ST.MARKS FORMATION
CHATTAHOOCHEE FORMATION

CHICKASAWHAY LIMESTONE FLORI
SUWANNEE LIMESTONE AQUFER
OLIGOCENE MARIANNA LIMESTONE SYSTEM
BUCATUNNA CLAY



OCALA LIMESTONE .*0*
EOCENE CLAIBORNE GROUP
UNDIFFERENTIATED SEDIMENTS BUB-FLORIDAN
CONFINING
UMT
PALEOCENE UNDIFFERENTIATED PALEOCENE ROCKS

CRETACEOUS .. o
AND OLDER UNDIFFERENTIATED -


I


NORTH FLORIDA

LITHOSTRATIGRAPHIC HYDROSTRATI-
UNIT GRAPHIC UNIT


UNDIFFERENTIATED SURFICIAL
PLEISTOCENE-HOLOCENE AQUIFER
SEDIMENTS SYSTEM
SYSTEM
MICCOSUKEE FORMATION
CYPRESSHEAD FORMATION 4
NASHUA FORMATION
INTERMEDIATE
AQUIFER
SYSTEM OR
HAWTHORN GROUP CONFINING
STATENVILLE FORMATION UNIT
COOSAWHATCHIE FM.
MARKSHEAD FORMATION ,,-.
PENNY FARMS FORMATION
ST MARKS FORMATION




SUWANNEE LIMESTONE ILORIDAN
AQUIFER
SYSTEM


OCALA LIMESTONE
AON PARK FORMATION
OLDSMAR FORMATION


CEDAR KEYS FORMATION **--r.
SUB-FLORI[DAN
CONFINING., '
UNDIFFERENTIATED UNIT p
..000


SOUTH FLORIDA

LITHOSTRATIGRAPHIC HYDROSTRATI-
UNIT GRAPHIC UNIT

UNDIFFERENTIATED
PLEISTOCENE-HOLOCENE RIAL
SURFICIA-
SEDIMENTS
MIAMI UMESTONE AQUIFER
KEY LARGO LIMESTONE
ANASTASIA FORMATION SYSTEM
FORT THOMPSON FORMATION
CALOOSAHATCHEE FORMATION


TAMIAMI FORMATION
INTERMEDIATE
AQUIFER
SYSTEM OR
HAWTHORN GROUP CONFINING
PEACE RIVER FORMATION UNIT
BONE VALLEY MEMBER
ARCADIA FORMATION

TAMPA- NOCATEE I -*
MEMBERS



SUWANNEE LIMESTONE
FLORIDAN
AOIFER
SYSTEM

OCALA UMESTONE
AVON PARK FORMATION
OLDSMAR FORMATION


CEDAR KEYS FORMATION -,- ----
CONFININo ,
UNDIFFERENTIATED UNIT
I Ldup ', 0d-- i


Figure 1.


Hydrostratigraphic Nomenclature (modified from Southeastern Geological Society Ad Hoc
Committee on Florida Hydrostratigraphic Unit Definition, 1986)









predominated in the Paleogene (67 to 24 mya) throughout most of

Florida. Evaporite sediments, gypsum, anhydrite and some halite

(salt), developed periodically due to the restriction of

circulation in the carbonate depositional environments. The

evaporites are most common in the Mesozoic and the Paleogene

carbonates at and below the base of the Floridan aquifer system,

where they help form the impermeable sub-Floridan confining unit.

During the early part of the Cenozoic, the Paleogene, the

siliciclastic sediment supply from the north, the Appalachian

Mountains, was limited. The mountains had eroded to a low level

through millions of years of erosion. The minor amount of sediment

reaching the marine environment was washed away from the Florida

Platform by currents in the Gulf Trough (Suwannee Straits) (Figure

2). This effectively protected the carbonate depositional

environments of the platform from the influx of the siliciclastic

sediments. As a result, the carbonates of the Paleogene section

are very pure, with extremely limited quantities of siliciclastic

sediments. In the central and western panhandle areas, which are

part of the Gulf Coastal Plain, siliciclastic deposition continued

well into the Paleogene. Significant carbonate deposition did not

begin in this area until the Late Eocene (40 mya). During the

later Eocene, as the influx of siliciclastics declined

dramatically, carbonate depositional environments developed to the

north and west of the limits of the Florida Platform. Carbonate

deposition was continuous in the central panhandle and intermittent

in the western panhandle through the Late Oligocene (approximately

28 mya).


~_















































Figure 2.


Structural Features of Florida
a) Pre-Cenozoic
b) Mid-Cenozoic


..^^









During the Late Oligocene to Early Miocene, an episode of

renewed uplift occurred in the Appalachians (Stuckey, 1965). With

a renewed supply of sediments being eroded and entering the fluvial

transport systems, siliciclastic sediments flooded the marine

environment near the southeastern North American coastline. The

influx of massive quantities of these sediments filled the Gulf

Trough and encroached onto the carbonate platform through longshore

transport, currents and other means. At first, the sands and clays

were mixed with the carbonate sediments. Later, as more and more

siliciclastics were transported south, the carbonate sediment

deposition declined to only limited occurrences. Siliciclastic

sediments, with varying amounts of carbonate in the matrix,

dominated the depositional environments. The carbonate

depositional environments were pushed further to the south until

virtually the entire platform was covered with sands and clays.

The influx of siliciclastics has diminished somewhat during the

later Pleistocene and the Recent resulting in carbonate deposition

occurring in limited areas around the southern portion of the

Florida Platform.

The Miocene-aged siliciclastics appear to have completely

covered the Florida Platform providing a relatively impermeable

barrier to the vertical migration of ground water (Stringfield,

1966; Scott, 1981). This aquiclude protected the underlying

carbonate sediments from dissolution. Erosion breached the

confining unit by the early Pleistocene (?) allowing aggressive

waters to dissolve the underlying carbonates. The progressive

dissolution of the limestones enhanced the secondary porosity of










the near-surface sediments of the Floridan aquifer system and

allowed the development of numerous karst features.

Karst features formed in the Florida peninsula at least as

early as the latest Oligocene as determined from the occurrence of

terrestrial vertebrate faunas (MacFadden and Webb, 1982). Based on

subsurface data from the interpretation of FGS cores, it appears

that the development of karst in Florida occurred during the

Paleogene. Unpublished work by Hammes and Budd (progress report to

the FGS, U. Hammes and D. Budd, University of Colorado, 1990)

indicates the occurrence of numerous "intraformational

disconformities" which resulted in the development of karstt,

caliche and other subaerial exposure features...". These

disconformities were the result of sea level fluctuations on a very

shallow water, carbonate bank depositional environment. At this

time there is no documentation of large scale karst features

forming during these episodes of exposure.



Structure

The oldest structures recognized as affecting the deposition

of sediments of the Florida Platform are expressed on the pre-

Middle Jurassic erosional surface (Arthur, 1988). These include

the Peninsular Arch, South Florida Basin, Southeast Georgia

Embayment, Suwannee Straits and the Southwest Georgia Embayment or

Apalachicola Embayment. These structures affected the deposition

of the Mesozoic sediments and the Early Cenozoic (Paleogene)

sediments. The structures recognized on the top of the Paleogene

section are somewhat different than the older features. The









younger features, which variously affected the deposition of the

Neogene and Quaternary sediments, include the Ocala Platform,

Sanford High, Chattahoochee Anticline, Apalachicola Embayment, Gulf

Trough, Jacksonville Basin (part of the Southeast Georgia

Embayment), Osceola Low and the Okeechobee Basin (Figure 2). For

more specific information on these structures and their origins

refer to Chen (1965), Miller (1986) and Scott (1988a).

The occurrence and condition of the aquifer systems are

directly related to their position with respect to the structural

features. The Floridan aquifer system lies at or near the surface

under poorly confined to unconfined conditions on the positive

features such as the Ocala Platform, Sanford High and the

Chattahoochee Anticline. Within the negative areas, (the

Apalachicola Embayment, Jacksonville Basin, Osceola Basin and the

Okeechobee Basin) the Floridan aquifer system is generally well

confined. The intermediate aquifer system is generally absent from

the positive structures and best developed in the negative areas.

The surficial aquifer system may occur anywhere in relation to

these structures where the proper conditions exist.

The occurrence and development of the beds confining the

Floridan aquifer system also relate to the subsurface structures.

On some of the positive areas (Ocala Platform and Chattahoochee

Anticline) the confining beds of the intermediate confining unit

are absent due to erosion and possibly nondeposition. In those

areas where the confining units are breached, dissolution of the

carbonate sediments developed a karstic terrain. Dissolution of

the limestones enhanced the porosity and permeability of the










Floridan aquifer system including the development of some cavernous

flow systems.


Geomorphology

Florida's land surface is relatively flat and has very low

relief. The surface features of Florida are the result of the

complex interaction of depositional and erosional processes. As

sea level fluctuated during the later Cenozoic, the Florida

Platform has repeatedly been inundated by marine waters resulting

in marine depositional processes dominating the development of

Florida's geomorphology. The relict shoreline features found

throughout most of the state are most easily identified at lower

elevations, nearer the present coastline. Inland and at higher

elevations, these features have been subjected to more extensive

erosion and subsequent modification by wind and water. In those

areas of the state where carbonate rocks and shell-bearing

sediments are subjected to dissolution, the geomorphic features may

be modified by development of karst features. The extent of the

modification ranges from minor sagging due to the slow dissolution

of carbonate or shell to the development of large collapse sink-

holes. The changes that result may make identification of the

original features difficult.

White (1970) subdivided the State into three major geomorphic

divisions, the northern or proximal zone, the central or mid-

peninsular zone and the southern or distal zone (Figure 3). The

northern zone encompasses the Northwest Florida Water Management

District and the northern portions of the Suwannee River and St.











NORTHERN OR
PROXIMAL ZONE


CENTRAL OR
MID-PENINSULAR
Z[NE


0
0




0

C,!
7a
=i

w
0^


Figure 3. Geomorphologic Provinces of Florida


I *. a .
U 1 assICcu


7
A










Johns River Water Management Districts. The central zone includes

the southern portions of the Suwannee River and St. Johns River

Water Management Districts, the Southwest Florida Water Management

District and the northern part of the South Florida Water

Management District. The southern zone comprises the remainder of

the South Florida Water Management District.

In a broad general sense, the geomorphology of Florida

consists of the Northern Highlands, the Central Highlands and the

Coastal Lowlands (White, Vernon and Puri in Puri and Vernon, 1964).

White (1970) further subdivided these features as shown in Figures

4 through 8. In general, the highlands are well drained while the

lowlands often are swampy, poorly drained areas. The highland

areas as delimited by White, Vernon and Puri in Puri and Vernon

(1964) often coincide with the areas of "high recharge" as

recognized by Stewart (1980). Only a few, limited areas of "high

recharge" occur in the Coastal Lowlands.

Many of the highland areas in the peninsula to the central

panhandle exhibit variably developed karst features. These range

from shallow, broad sinkholes that develop slowly to those that are

large and deep and develop rapidly (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985).

The development of the karst features and basins has a direct

impact on the recharge in the region. The karst features allow the

rapid infiltration of surface water into the aquifer systems and

offer direct access to the aquifers by pollutants.



Lithostratigraphy and Hydrostratigraphy

The aquifer systems in Florida are composed of sedimentary










Floridan aquifer system including the development of some cavernous

flow systems.


Geomorphology

Florida's land surface is relatively flat and has very low

relief. The surface features of Florida are the result of the

complex interaction of depositional and erosional processes. As

sea level fluctuated during the later Cenozoic, the Florida

Platform has repeatedly been inundated by marine waters resulting

in marine depositional processes dominating the development of

Florida's geomorphology. The relict shoreline features found

throughout most of the state are most easily identified at lower

elevations, nearer the present coastline. Inland and at higher

elevations, these features have been subjected to more extensive

erosion and subsequent modification by wind and water. In those

areas of the state where carbonate rocks and shell-bearing

sediments are subjected to dissolution, the geomorphic features may

be modified by development of karst features. The extent of the

modification ranges from minor sagging due to the slow dissolution

of carbonate or shell to the development of large collapse sink-

holes. The changes that result may make identification of the

original features difficult.

White (1970) subdivided the State into three major geomorphic

divisions, the northern or proximal zone, the central or mid-

peninsular zone and the southern or distal zone (Figure 3). The

northern zone encompasses the Northwest Florida Water Management

District and the northern portions of the Suwannee River and St.














SCALE
5 a 5 10 30 MILES
SO SD O 30 KILOTERS
SO s lo to 30 KLRIETCRS


LEGEND


I SLOPE HILLS

i RIDGES


Figure 4. Geomorphologic Features of Northwest Florida Water Management District
(NWFWMD) (after White, Puri and Vernon in Puri and Vernon, 1964)


AKULLA
SAND
HILLS










Johns River Water Management Districts. The central zone includes

the southern portions of the Suwannee River and St. Johns River

Water Management Districts, the Southwest Florida Water Management

District and the northern part of the South Florida Water

Management District. The southern zone comprises the remainder of

the South Florida Water Management District.

In a broad general sense, the geomorphology of Florida

consists of the Northern Highlands, the Central Highlands and the

Coastal Lowlands (White, Vernon and Puri in Puri and Vernon, 1964).

White (1970) further subdivided these features as shown in Figures

4 through 8. In general, the highlands are well drained while the

lowlands often are swampy, poorly drained areas. The highland

areas as delimited by White, Vernon and Puri in Puri and Vernon

(1964) often coincide with the areas of "high recharge" as

recognized by Stewart (1980). Only a few, limited areas of "high

recharge" occur in the Coastal Lowlands.

Many of the highland areas in the peninsula to the central

panhandle exhibit variably developed karst features. These range

from shallow, broad sinkholes that develop slowly to those that are

large and deep and develop rapidly (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985).

The development of the karst features and basins has a direct

impact on the recharge in the region. The karst features allow the

rapid infiltration of surface water into the aquifer systems and

offer direct access to the aquifers by pollutants.



Lithostratigraphy and Hydrostratigraphy

The aquifer systems in Florida are composed of sedimentary




NI


/


SCMLE


Figure 5. Geomorphologic Features of Suwannee River Water Management District (SRWMD)
(after White, 1970)





























.1.


-L 1


mr
rrl

b d r


Figure 6. Geomorphologic Features of St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD)
__ (after- a hi-te. *fL9 d-f7\


I
!z 3mn
1


730


U

r
u
o a






iiP


I

/-I


r-------








Cnr


Figure 7.


FI Z
C D
c m








r z
Geomorphologic Features of South Florida Water Management District
(SFWMD) (after White, 1970)
















0 o LEGEND

9$ HILLS

-N- r- 11 PLAINS

\ L3 .RIDGES

SCALE
GULF 5 o 5 10 20 MILES
Irai ll I I| i ,"












C)- PLAIN S
5 0 5 10 20 30 KILOMETERS





















Figure 8. Geomorphologic Features of Southwest Florida Water
Management District (SWFWMD) (after White, 1970)
Management District (SWFWMD) (after White, 1970)









rock units of varying composition and induration which are

subdivided into geologic formations based on the lithologiz

characteristics (rock composition and physical characteristics).

Lithostratigraphy is the formal recognition of the defined geologic

formations based on the North American Stratigraphic Code (North

American Commission on Stratigraphic Nomenclature, 1983). Many

units are related by the similarities of the sediments while others

may be defined on the sediment heterogeneity. An aquifer is a body

of sediment or rock that is sufficiently permeable to conduct

ground water and to yield economically significant quantities of

water to wells and springs (Bates and Jackson, 1987). Florida's

primary aquifers are referred to as aquifer systems due to the

complex nature of the water-producing zones they contain. The

aquifer systems are identified independently from lithostrat-

igraphic units and may include more than one formation or be

limited to only a portion of a formation. The succession of

hydrostratigraphic units forms the framework used to discuss the

ground-water system in Florida (Figure 1) (Southeastern Geological

Society Ad Hoc Committee on Florida Hydrostratigraphic Unit

Definition, 1986).

The lithostratigraphic and hydrostratigraphic framework of

Florida shows significant variability from north to south and west

to east in the peninsula and the panhandle. The formational units

discussed are only those Cenozoic sediments that relate to the

Floridan aquifer system, the intermediate aquifer system/confining

unit and the surficial aquifer system.









Lithostratigraphy

The lithostratigraphic units that comprise the aquifer systems

in Florida occur primarily as subsurface units with very limited

surface exposures. As a result of the generally low relief of the

state, virtually all the lithostratigraphic descriptions are from

well cuttings and cores used to study the sediments. Geophysical

logs have proven useful in studying the sediments and attempting

regional correlations (Chen, 1965; Miller, 1986; Scott, 1988a;

Johnson, 1983).

The following description of the lithologic parameters of the

various units associated with the aquifer systems is brief and

generalized. More complete information concerning these groups and

formations can be obtained by referring to Florida Geological

Survey and U. S. Geological Survey publications relating to

specific areas and/or specific aquifers. State-wide data concerning

the thickness and tops of sediments of Paleocene (67-55 mya) and

Eocene (55-38 mya) age (chronostratigraphic units) can be found in

Chen (1965) and Miller (1986). Miller (1986) provides this data for

Oligocene (38-25 mya) and Miocene (25-5.3 mya) sediments. Scott

(1988) provides detailed information on the Miocene strata in the

eastern panhandle and peninsular areas. The Plio-Pleistocene (5.3-

.01 mya) and the Holocene (.01 mya -Present) sediments which make

up the surficial aquifer system, are discussed in a number of

references which are cited in the appropriate section of this

paper. Figure 1 shows the lithostratigraphic nomenclature utilized

in this text.










Cenozoic Erathem

Tertiary System

Paleocene Series

In general, most of the Paleocene sediments in the Florida

peninsula form the sub-Floridan confining unit and only a limited

portion of these rocks are part of the Floridan aquifer system.

Siliciclastic sediments predominate in the Paleocene section in

much of the panhandle (Chen, 1965; Miller, '1986). The silici-

clastic sediments are composed of low permeability marine clays,

fine sands and impure limestone (Miller,1986) which lie below the

base of the Floridan aquifer system. Following Miller (1986), the

siliciclastic sediments are referred to as "Undifferentiated

Paleocene Rocks (Sediments)" and are not discussed further.

The siliciclastic sediments grade laterally into carbonate

sediments across the Gulf Trough in the eastern panhandle (Chen,

1965). Carbonate sediments, mostly dolostone, occur interbedded

with evaporite minerals throughout the Paleocene section in the

peninsula (Chen, 1965). These sediments are included in the Cedar

Keys Formation and occur throughout the peninsular area and into

the eastern panhandle.



Cedar Keys Formation

The Cedar Keys Formation consists primarily of dolostone and

evaporites (gypsum and anhydrite) with a minor percentage of

limestone (Chen, 1965). The upper portion of the Cedar Keys

consists of coarsely crystalline, porous dolostone. The lower

portion of the Cedar Keys Formation contains more finely









crystalline dolostone which is interbedded with anhydrite. The

Cedar Keys Formation grades into the Undifferentiated Paleocene

Sediments in the eastern panhandle (Miller, 1986) which equate with

the Wilcox Group (Braunstein et al., 1988).

The configuration of the Paleocene sediments in peninsular

Florida reflect depositional controls inherited from the pre-

existing Mesozoic structures, including the Peninsular Arch,

Southeast Georgia Embayment, and the South Florida Basin (Miller,

1986). The Cedar Keys Formation forms the base of the Floridan

aquifer system throughout the peninsula except in the northwestern-

most peninsular area where the Oldsmar Formation forms the base

(Miller, 1986). The upper, porous dolostone comprises the lowest

beds of the Floridan aquifer system. The lower Cedar Keys

Formation is significantly less porous, contains evaporites and

forms the sub-Floridan confining unit.

Eocene Series

The sediments of the Eocene Series that form portions of the

Floridan aquifer system are carbonates. During the Early Eocene,

deposition followed a distribution pattern similar to the Paleocene

carbonate sediments. However, through the Eocene, carbonate-

forming environments slowly encroached further north and west over

what had been siliciclastic depositional environments during the

Paleocene. The Eocene carbonate sediments are placed in the

Oldsmar Formation, Avon Park Formation and the Ocala Group. The

Eocene carbonate sediments comprise a large part of the Floridan

aquifer system.










Claiborne Group

The Lower to Middle Eocene Claiborne Group unconformably (?)

overlies the undifferentiated Lower Eocene and Paleocene sediments.

The. Claiborne Group consists of the Tallahatta and Lisbon

Formations which are lithologically nearly identical and are not

separated. The group is composed of glauconitic, often clayey sand

grading into fine-grained limestone to the south (Allen, 1987).

The Claiborne Group ranges from 250 to 400 feet below NGVD and is

up to 350 feet thick (Allen, 1987). It is unconformably overlain

by the Ocala Limestone.



Oldsmar Formation

The Oldsmar Formation consists predominantly of limestone

interbedded with vuggy dolostone. Dolomitization is usually more

extensive in the lower portion of the section. Pore-filling gypsum

and thin beds of anhydrite occur in some places, often forming the

base of the Floridan aquifer system (Miller, 1986).

The Oldsmar Formation is recognized throughout the Florida

peninsula. It grades laterally in the eastern panhandle into

Undifferentiated Lower to Middle Eocene sediments equivalent to the

Claiborne Group. The undifferentiated sediments are marine

shales, siltstones, fine sandstones and impure limestones (Miller,

1986).



Avon Park Formation

The Middle Eocene sediments of peninsular Florida as

originally described by Applin and Applin (1944) were subdivided,









in ascending order, into the Lake City Limestone and the Avon Park

Limestone. Miller (1986) recommended the inclusion of the Lake

City in the Avon Park based on the very similar nature of the

sediments. Miller also changed the term limestone to formation due

to the presence of significant quantities of dolostone within the

expanded Avon Park Formation.

The Avon Park Formation is primarily composed of fossiliferous

limestone interbedded with vuggy dolostone. In a few, limited

areas of west-central Florida, evaporites are present as .vug

fillings in dolostone.

The Avon Park Formation occurs throughout the Florida

peninsula and the eastern panhandle in a pattern very similar to

the underlying Oldsmar Formation. The oldest rocks cropping out in

Florida belong to the Avon Park Formation. These sediments are

locally exposed on the crest of the Ocala Platform in west-central

peninsular Florida.

The carbonate sediments of the Avon Park Formation form part

of the Floridan aquifer system and serve to subdivide it into an

upper and lower Floridan in many areas. Miller (1986) recognized

that portions of the Avon Park Formation are fine-grained and have

low permeability, often acting as a confining bed in the middle of

the Floridan aquifer system. In Brevard County, for example, these

low permeability beds are relied upon to keep less desirable water

injected into the lower Floridan from migrating into the potable

water of the upper Floridan.










Ocala Limestone

Dall and Harris (1892) referred to the limestones exposed in

central peninsular Florida near the city of Ocala in Marion County

as the Ocala Limestone. Puri (1957) raised the Ocala to group and

recognized formations based on the incorporated foraminiferal

faunas. As a result of the biostratigraphic nature of these

subdivisions, formational recognition is often difficult. In

keeping with the intent of the Code of Stratigraphic Nomenclature,

in this text, the Florida Geological Survey is returning to the use

of the Ocala Limestone terminology.

The lower and upper subdivisions of the Ocala Limestone are

based on distinct lithologic differences. The lower subdivision

consists of a more granular limestone (grainstone to packstone).

The lower faces is not present everywhere and may be partially to

completely dolomitized in some regions (Miller, 1986). The upper

unit is composed of variably muddy (carbonate), granular limestone

(packstone to wackestone with very limited grainstone). Often this

unit is very soft and friable with numerous large foraminifera. In

southern Florida, virtually the entire Ocala Limestone consists of

a muddy (carbonate) to finely pelletal limestone (Miller,1986).

Chert is a common component of the upper portion of the Ocala

Limestone. The Bumpnose "Formation", a very early Oligocene

fossiliferous limestone, is lithologically very similar to the

Ocala Limestone. It is included in the Ocala Limestone in this

report.

The sediments of the Ocala Limestone form one of the most

permeable zones within the Floridan aquifer system. The Ocala









Limestone comprises much of the Floridan aquifer system in the

central and western panhandle. The extensive development of

secondary porosity by dissolution has greatly enhanced the

permeability, especially in those areas where the confining beds

are breached or absent. The Ocala Limestone forms the lower

portion of the Floridan in the western panhandle (Wagner, 1982).

In much of the peninsular area, it comprises all or part of the

upper Floridan.

By Late Eocene, carbonate sediments were deposited

significantly further to the north and west than had previously

occurred during the Cenozoic. The Ocala Limestone is present

throughout much of the State except where the unit has been

erosionally removed. This occurs in outcrop on the crest of the

Ocala Platform and in the subsurface on the Sanford High, a limited

area in central Florida and a relatively large area in southernmost

Florida (Miller, 1986). Chen (1965) suggests that the Ocala

Limestone is also absent in a portion of Palm Beach County in

eastern southern Florida. The surface and thickness of the Ocala

Limestone are highly irregular due to dissolution of the limestones

as karst topography developed.



Oligocene Series
The carbonate sediments of the Oligocene Series form much of

the upper portion of the Floridan aquifer system in Florida. The

depositional pattern of the Oligocene sediments shows that

carbonate sediments were deposited well updip to the north of the

Florida Platform (Miller, 1986). In the central panhandle and to









the west,- siliciclastic sediments began to be mixed with the

carbonates.

The Oligocene sediments in peninsular Florida and part of the

panhandle are characteristically assigned to the Suwannee

Limestone. The Oligocene sediments in the central and western

panhandle are placed in the Marianna, Bucatunna and Chickasawhay

Formations (Miller., 1986). In the westernmost panhandle, the lower

carbonates of the Suwannee Limestone grade into the siliciclastic

Byram Formation (Braunstein et al., 1988).



Suwannee Limestone

The Suwannee Limestone consists primarily of variably vuggy

and muddy (carbonate) limestone (grainstone to packstone). The

occurrence of a vuggy, porous dolostone is recognized in the type

area, the eastern to central panhandle and in southwest Florida.

The dolostone often occurs interbedded'between limestone beds.

The Suwannee Limestone is absent throughout a large area of

the northern and central peninsula probably due to erosion.

Scattered outliers of Suwannee Limestone are present within this

area. Where it is present, the Suwannee Limestone forms much of

the upper portion of the Floridan aquifer system. The reader is

referred to Miller (1986) for a map of the occurrence of the

Suwannee Limestone in the peninsula.



Marianna Limestone

The Marianna Limestone is a fossiliferous, variably

argillaceous limestone (packstone to wackestone) that occurs in the









central panhandle. It is laterally equivalent to the lower portion

of the Suwannee Limestone. The Marianna Limestone forms a portion

of the uppermost Floridan aquifer system in the central panhandle

region.


Bucatunna Clay Member of the Byram Formation

The Bucatunna Clay Member is silty to finely sandy clay.

Fossils are generally scarce in the Bucatunna (Marsh, 1966). The

sand content of the Bucatunna ranges from very minor percentages to

as much as 40 percent (Marsh, 1966).

The Bucatunna Clay Member has a limited distribution in the

western panhandle. It occurs from the western end of the state

eastward to approximately the Okaloosa-Walton County line where it

pinches out (Marsh, 1966). The Bucatunna Clay Member provides an

effective intra-aquifer confining unit in the middle of the

Floridan aquifer system in the western panhandle.



Chickasawhay Formation

Marsh (1966) describes the Chickasawhay Formation as being

composed of highly porous limestone and dolomitic limestone. This

is often interbedded with porous to compact dolomitic limestone to

dolostone. The Chickasawhay Formation grades into the upper

Suwannee Limestone eastward. Due to difficulty in separating the

Chickasawhay from the Lower Miocene limestones in the western

panhandle, both Marsh (1966) and Miller (1986) included thin beds

of possible Lower Miocene carbonate in the upper portion of the

Chickasawhay Formation. The permeable sediments of the









Chickasawhay Formation form part of the upper Floridan in the

western panhandle (Wagner, 1982).



Miocene Series
The Miocene Epoch was a time of significant change in the

depositional sequence on the Florida Platform and the adjacent Gulf

and Atlantic Coastal Plains. During the early part of the Miocene,

carbonate sediments continued to be deposited over most of the

State. Intermixed with the carbonates were increasing percentages

of siliciclastic sediments. By the end of the Early Miocene, the

deposition of carbonate sediments was occurring only in southern

peninsular Florida. Siliciclastic deposition dominated the Middle

Miocene statewide with this trend continuing into the Late Miocene.

The basal Miocene carbonate sediments often form the uppermost

portion of the Floridan aquifer system. The remainder of the

Miocene sediments form much of the intermediate aquifer system and

intermediate confining system. In some instances, these sediments

may also be included in the surficial aquifer system.

Unusual depositional conditions existed during the Miocene as

is evident from the occurrence of abundant phosphate, palygorskite,

opaline cherts and other uncommon minerals plus an abundance of

dolomite within the Hawthorn Group (Scott, 1988a). The presence of

these minerals may influence ground-water quality in areas where

the Miocene sediments are being weathered. Ground-water quality

may also be affected where these sediments form the upper portion

of the Floridan aquifer system or portions of the intermediate

aquifer system.









Current geologic thought holds that in the peninsula the
Miocene section is composed of the Hawthorn Group. The Tampa

Formation is included as a member in the basal Hawthorn Group. In

the panhandle, the Lower Miocene remains the Chattahoochee and St.

Marks Formations, the Middle Miocene Alum Bluff Group and the Upper

Miocene Choctawhatchee Formation and equivalents. Formations

previously mentioned in the literature as being Miocene in age

include the Tamiami, which is Pliocene in age, and the Miccosukee

Formation which is now recognized as being Late Pliocene to

possibly early Pleistocene in age.

The Miocene sediments are absent from the Ocala Platform and

the Sanford High (Scott, 1988a). These sediments are as much as

800 feet thick in southwest Florida (Miller, 1986; Scott, 1988a),

500 feet thick in the northeastern peninsula (Scott, 1988a) and 900

to 1000 feet thick in the westernmost panhandle (Miller, 1986).



Chattahoochee Formation

The Chattahoochee Formation is predominantly a fine-grained,

often fossiliferous, silty to sandy dolostone which is variable to

a limestone (Huddlestun, 1988). Fine-grained sand and silt may

also form beds with various admixtures of dolomite and clay

minerals. Clay beds may also be common in some areas (Puri and

Vernon, 1964).

The Chattahoochee Formation occurs in a limited area of the

central panhandle from the axis of the Gulf Trough westward. It

appears that the Chattahoochee grades to the west into a carbonate

unit alternately referred to as Tampa Limestone (Marsh, 1966;










Miller, 1986) or St. Marks (Puri and Vernon, 1964; NWFWMD Staff,

1975). Northward into Georgia, this unit grades into the basal

Hawthorn Group (Huddlestun, 1988). To the east of the axis of the

Gulf Trough, the Chattahoochee Formation grades into the St. Marks

Formation (Puri and Vernon, 1964; Scott, 1986). The gradational

change between the Chattahoochee and St. Marks Formations occurs

over a broad area of Leon and Gadsden Counties (Scott, 1986). The

sediments of the Chattahoochee Formation comprise the upper zone of

the Floridan aquifer system in the central panhandle.



St. Marks Formation

The St. Marks Formation is a fossiliferous limestone

(packstone to wackestone). Sand grains occur scattered in an often

very moldic limestone. The lithology of the St. Marks and the

associated units in the Apalachicola Embayment and to the west are

often difficult to separate (Schmidt, 1984). The St. Marks

Formation lithology can be traced in cores grading into the

Chattahoochee Formation (Scott, 1986). This formation forms the

upper part of the Floridan aquifer system in portions of the

eastern and central panhandle.



Hawthorn Group

The Hawthorn Group is a complex series of the phosphate-

bearing Miocene sediments in peninsular and eastern panhandle

Florida. The carbonate sediments of the Hawthorn Group are

primarily fine-grained and contain varying admixtures of clay,

silt, sand and phosphate. Dolostone is the dominant carbonate









sediment type in the northern two-thirds of the peninsula while

limestone predominates in the southern peninsula and in the eastern

panhandle area.

The siliciclastic sediment component consists of fine- to

coarse-grained quartz sand, quartz silt and clay minerals in widely

varying proportions. The clay minerals present include

palygorskite, smectite and illite with kaolinite occurring in the

weathered sediments.

The top of the Hawthorn Group is a highly irregular erosional

and karstic surface. This unconformable surface can exhibit

dramatic local relief especially in outcrop along the flanks of the

Ocala Platform. Figures 12 through 19 show the top and thickness

of the Hawthorn Group sediments which comprise the intermediate

aquifer system/confining unit.

In the peninsula, the Hawthorn Group can be broken into a

northern section and a southern section. The northern section

consists of interbedded phosphatic carbonates and siliciclastics

with a trend of increasing siliciclastics in the younger sediments.

In ascending order, the formations in northern Florida are the

Penney Farms, Marks Head and Coosawhatchie and its lateral

equivalent Statenville (Scott, 1988a). The sediments comprising

these formations characteristically have low permeabilities and

form an effective aquiclude, the intermediate confining unit. In

a few areas, permeabilities within the Hawthorn sediments are

locally high enough to allow the limited development of an

intermediate aquifer system.

The southern section consists of a lower dominantly phosphatic










carbonate section and an upper phosphatic siliciclastic section.

In the southern area, in addition to increasing siliciclastics

upsection, there is also a trend of increasing siliciclastics from

west to east in the lower carbonate section. The Hawthorn Group in

southern Florida has been subdivided into, in ascending order, the

Arcadia Formation with the former Tampa Formation as a basal

member, and the Peace River Formation (Scott, 1988a). Throughout

much of south Florida, these sediments have limited or low

permeabilities and form an effective intermediate confining unit.

However, where the Tampa Member is present and permeable enough, it

may form the upper portion of the Floridan aquifer system. In

portions of southwestern Florida, the Hawthorn sediments are

permeable enough to form several important producing zones in the

intermediate aquifer system (Knapp et al., 1986; Smith and Adams,

1988).

The Hawthorn Group, Torreya Formation sediments in the eastern

panhandle are predominantly siliciclastics with limited amounts of

carbonates (Scott, 1988a). In this area, carbonates become

increasingly important in the Gulf Trough where the basal Hawthorn

sediments are fine-grained carbonates. The siliciclastic sediments

are very clayey and form an effective intermediate confining unit.

The carbonate sediments may locally be permeable enough to form the

upper portion of the Floridan aquifer system.


Bruce Creek Limestone

Huddlestun (1976) applied the name Bruce Creek Limestone to

late Middle Miocene limestones occurring in the Apalachicola









Embayment and coastal areas of the central and western panhandle.

The Bruce Creek Limestone is a fossiliferous, variably sandy

limestone (Schmidt, 1984). This lithology becomes indistin-

guishable, to the east, from lithologies found in the St. Marks

Formation (Schmidt, 1984). The Bruce Creek Limestone is laterally

equivalent to and grades into the lower portion of the Alum Bluff

Group (Schmidt, 1984). The Bruce Creek Limestone forms part of the

upper Floridan aquifer system in the central and western panhandle.


Alum Bluff Group

West of the Apalachicola River in the Florida panhandle, the

Hawthorn Group is replaced by the Alum Bluff Group. The Alum Bluff

Group includes the Chipola Formation, Oak Grove Sand, Shoal River

Formation and the Choctawhatchee Formation (Braunstein et al.,

1988). The formations included in this group are generally defined

on the basis of their molluskan faunas and are of variable areal

extents. These sediments can be distinguished as a lithologic

entity at the group level and will be referred to as such in this

text.

The Alum Bluff Group consists of clays, sands and shell beds

which may vary from a fossiliferous, sandy clay to a pure sand or

clay and occasional carbonate beds or lenses. The Jackson Bluff

Formation is currently thought to be Late Pliocene in age; and,

even though Huddlestun (1976) included it in the Alum Bluff Group,

it was not included in the Alum Bluff Group on the latest

correlation charts (Braunstein et al., 1988). Sediments comprising

the Jackson Bluff Formation are very similar to those making up the










Alum Bluff Group.

The sediments comprising the Alum Bluff Group are generally

impermeable.due to the abundance of clay-sized particles. These

sediments form an important part of the intermediate confining unit

in the central panhandle.



Pensacola Clay

The Pensacola Clay consists of three members: lower and upper

clay members and a middle sand member, the Escambia Sand (Marsh,

1966). Lithologically, the clay members consist of silty, sandy

clays with carbonized plant remains (Marsh, 1966). The sand member

is fine to coarse, quartz sand. Marine fossils are rarely present

in the Pensacola Clay with the exception of a fossiliferous layer

near the base (Clark and Schmidt, 1982). The Pensacola Clay grades

laterally into the lower portion of the "Miocene Coarse Clastics"

to the north and the Alum Bluff Group and the lower Intracoastal

Formation to the east (Clark and Schmidt, 1982).

The Pensacola Clay forms the intermediate confining unit for

the Floridan in the western panhandle. It lies immediately

suprajacent to the limestones of the upper Floridan aquifer system.



Intracoastal Formation

Schmidt (1984) describes the Intragoastal Formation as a "very

sandy, highly microfossiliferous, poorly consolidated,

argillaceous, calcarenitic limestone." Phosphate is generally

present in amounts greater than one percent. This unit is

laterally gradational with the Pensacola Clay and Mio-Pliocene









"Coarse Clastics" (Schmidt, 1984). The lower Intracoastal

Formation is Middle Miocene while the upper portion is Late

Pliocene. Wagner (1982) indicates that the Intracoastal Formation

forms part of the intermediate confining unit in the central to

western panhandle.



Pliocene-Pleistocene Series
The sediments of the Pliocene-Pleistocene Series occur over

most of the State. These sediments range from nonfossiliferous,

clean sands to very fossiliferous, sandy clays and carbonates.

Lithologic units comprising this series include the "Coarse

Classics", Tamiami Formation, Citronelle Formation, Miccosukee

Formation, Cypresshead Formation, Nashua Formation, Caloosahatchee

Formation, Fort Thompson Formation, Key Largo Limestone, Miami

Limestone, Anastasia Formation and Undifferentiated Pleistocene-

Holocene sediments. The upper portion of the Intracoastal

Formation is Pliocene and is discussed with the lower Intracoastal

Formation under the Miocene Series. For a further discussion of

the Plio-Pleistocene sediments in southern Florida, see Scott and

Allmon (1992).


"Coarse Clastics"

The name "Coarse Clastics" has been applied to sequences of

quartz sands and gravels in a number of areas around Florida.

These sediments are often referred to in the literature as "Miocene

Coarse Clastics" (for example, Puri and Vernon, 1964).

In northern Florida, these sediments are referred to as the









Cypresshead Formation of Late Pliocene to Early Pleistocene age

(Scott, 1988b). In southern Florida, Knapp et al. (1986) referred

to these sediments as the "Miocene Coarse Clastics" and placed them

in the Hawthorn Group. In the panhandle, Marsh (1966) mentions the

"Miocene Coarse Clastics" as sands and gravel with some clay which

underlie the Citronelle Formation.

In the panhandle, the "Coarse Clastics" are variably clayey

sands with gravel and some shell material (Clark and Schmidt,

1982). These siliciclastics occur in Escambia, Santa Rosa and

western Okaloosa Counties in the western panhandle. They equate in

part to the upper part of the Pensacola Clay, part of the

Intracoastal Formation and part of the Alum Bluff Group.

In southern peninsular Florida, the coarse siliciclastics are

fine to very coarse quartz sands with quartz gravel and variable

amounts of clay, carbonate and phosphate. These sediments may

equate with the Cypresshead Formation sediments in central and

northern Florida.

These siliciclastic sediments form important aquifer systems

in portions of southern and panhandle Florida. In the western

panhandle, the "Coarse Clastics" form a portion of the Sand-and-

Gravel aquifer, part of the surficial aquifer system. These

sediments also comprise a portion of the surficial aquifer system

in the peninsular area, especially in southern Florida.



Tamiami Formation

The Tamiami Formation consists of the Pinecrest Sand Member,

the Ochopee Limestone Member, and the Buckingham Limestone Member









(Hunter, 1968). The various facies of the Tamiami occur over a

wide area of southern Florida. The relationships of the facies are

not well known due to: 1- the complex set of depositional

environments that were involved in the formation of the sediments

and 2- the Tamiami Formation most often occurs as a shallow

subsurface unit throughout much of its extent. Many of the facies

are important from a hydrogeologic perspective in an area of

ground-water problems.

The limestone in the Tamiami Formation occurs as two types:

1- a moderately to well-indurated, slightly phosphatic, variably

sandy, fossiliferous limestone (Ochopee) and 2- a poorly indurated

to unindurated, slightly phosphatic, variably sandy, fossiliferous

limestone (Buckingham). The sand facies is often composed of a

variably phosphatic and sandy, fossiliferous, calcareous, quartz

sand often containing abundant, well-preserved mollusk shells

(Pinecrest). The sand varies from a well-sorted, clean sand with

abundant well-preserved shells and traces of silt-sized phosphate

in the type Pinecrest Sand Member (Hunter, 1968) to a clayey sand

with sand-sized phosphate, clay-sized carbonate in the matrix and

abundant, well preserved mollusk shells. Siliciclastic sediments

(undifferentiated) of this age appear to occur along the eastern

side of the peninsula but have not been assigned to the Tamiami

Formation.

Sediments of the Tamiami Formation exhibit variable

permeabilities and form the lower Tamiami aquifer and Tamiami

confining beds of the surficial aquifer system (Knapp et al.,

1986). Smith and Adams (1988) indicate that the upper Tamiami









sediments form the basal portion of the "water table aquifer"

overlying the Tamiami confining beds.


Citronelle Formation

The Citronelle Formatioh is composed of fine to very coarse

siliciclastics. The name was extended to include the

siliciclastics comprising the central ridge system in the Florida

peninsula by Cooke (1945). As it is currently recognized, the

Citronelle Formation occurs only in the panhandle. The unit is

recognized from central Gadsden County on the east to the western

boundary of the State. The Citronelle Formation is composed of

very fine to very coarse, poorly sorted, angular to subangular

quartz sand. The unit contains significant amounts of clay, silt

and gravel which may occur as beds, lenses or stringers and may

vary rapidly over short distances. Limonite nodules and limonitic

cemented zones are common.

The Citronelle Formation extends over much of the central and

western panhandle. Previous investigators encountered problems in

the separation of the Citronelle and the overlying terrace deposits

and generally considered the thickness of the Citronelle including

these younger sediments (Marsh, 1966; Coe, 1979). The Citronelle

Formation grades laterally into the Miccosukee Formation through a

broad transition zone in Gadsden County. The Citronelle Formation

forms an important part of the Sand-and-Gravel aquifer in the

western panhandle and produces up to 2,000 gallons of water per

minute (Wagner, 1982).









Miccosukee Formation

Hendry and Yon (1967) describe the Miccosukee Formation as

consisting of interbedded and cross-bedded clay, silt, sand and

gravel of varying coarseness and admixtures. Limonite pebbles are

common in the unit. The Miccosukee Formation occurs in the eastern

panhandle from central Gadsden County on the west to eastern

Madison County on the east. Due to its clayey nature, the

Miccosukee Formation does not produce significant amounts of water.

It is generally considered to be part of the surficial aquifer

system (Southeastern Geological Society, 1986).


Cypresshead Formation

The name Cypresshead Formation was first used by Huddlestun

(1988). It was extended into Florida by Scott (1988b). The

Cypresshead Formation is composed entirely of siliciclastics;

predominantly quartz and clay minerals. The unit is charac-

teristically a mottled, fine- to coarse-grained, often gravelly,

variably clayey quartz sand. As a result of weathering, the clay

component of these sediments has characteristically been. altered to

kaolinite. Clay serves as a binding matrix for the sands and

gravels. Clay content may vary from absent to more than fifty

percent in sandy clay lithologies although the average clay content

is 10 to 20 percent. These sediments are often thinly bedded with

zones of cross bedding. The Cypresshead Formation appears to occur

in the Central Highlands of the peninsula south to northern

Highlands County, although the extent of the Cypresshead Formation

has not been accurately mapped in this area. This unit may locally









comprise the surficial aquifer system where clay content is low.



Nashua Formation

The Nashua is a fossiliferous, variably calcareous, sometimes

clayey, quartz sand. The fossil content is variable from a shelly

sand to a shell hash. The dominant fossils are mollusks.

The extent of the Nashua in northern Florida is not currently

known. It extends some distance into Georgia and appears to grade

laterally into the Cypresshead Formation (Huddlestun, 1988). The

Nashua Formation may produce limited amounts of water in localized

areas where it forms part of the surficial aquifer system.



Caloosahatchee Formation

The Caloosahatchee Formation consists of fossiliferous quartz

sand with variable amounts of carbonate matrix interbedded with

variably sandy, shelly limestones. The sediments vary from

nonindurated to well indurated. The fauna associated with these

sediments are varied and often well preserved. Fresh water

limestones are commonly present within this unit.

Sediments identified as part of the Caloosahatchee Formation

by various investigators occur from north of Tampa on the west

coast south to Lee County, eastward to the East Coast then

northward into northern Florida (DuBar, 1974). The Caloosahatchee

Formation as used here includes those sediments informally referred

to as the Bermont formation (Dubar, 1974).

In most hydrogeologic investigations of southern Florida, the

Caloosahatchee Formation is not differentiated from the Fort









Thompson Formation and other faunal units. The undifferentiated

sediments form much of the surficial aquifer system.



Fort Thompson Formation

The Fort Thompson Formation consists of interbedded shell beds

and limestones. The shell beds are characteristically variably

sandy and slightly indurated to unindurated. The sandy limestones

present in the Fort Thompson Formation were deposited under both

freshwater and marine conditions. The sand present in these

sediments is fine- to medium-grained. The sediments of Fort

Thompson age in central Florida along the east coast, consist of

fine to medium quartz sand with abundant mollusk shells and a minor

but variable clay content.

The Fort Thompson Formation, as the Caloosahatchee Formation,

is part of the undifferentiated sediments in southern Florida. It

forms a portion of the surficial aquifer system.


Key Largo Limestone

The Key Largo Limestone is a coralline limestone composed

of coral heads encased in a matrix of calcarenite (Stanley, 1966).

Hoffmeister and Multer (1968) indicate that the Key Largo Limestone

occurs in the subsurface from as far north as Miami Beach to as far

south as the Lower Keys. The fossil reef tract represented by the

Key Largo sediments may be as much as 8 miles wide (DuBar, 1974).

Near the northern and southern limits of the Key Largo Limestone,

it is overlain conformably by the Miami Limestone with which the

Key Largo is, in part, laterally equivalent.









The Key Largo Limestone forms a part of the Biscayne aquifer

of the surficial aquifer system. The Biscayne aquifer provides

water for areas of Dade, Broward and Monroe Counties.



Miami Limestone

The Miami Limestone includes an oolitic facies and a bryozoan

facies. The bryozoan facies underlies and extends west of the

western boundary of the oolitic facies. The bryozoan facies

consists of calcareous bryozoan colonies imbedded in a matrix of

ooids, pellets and skeletal sand. It generally occurs as a

variably sandy, recrystallized, fossiliferous limestone

(Hoffmeister et al., 1967). The oolitic facies consists of

variably sandy limestone composed primarily of oolites with

scattered concentrations of fossils.

Hoffmeister et al. (1967) indicate that the Miami Limestone

covers Dade County, much of Monroe County and the southern part of

Broward County. It grades laterally to the south into the Key

Largo Limestone and to the north into the Anastasia Formation. The

oolitic facies underlies the Atlantic Coastal Ridge southward from

southern Palm Beach County to southern Dade County.

The Miami Limestone forms a portion of the Biscayne aquifer of

the surficial aquifer system. It is very porous and permeable due

to the dissolution of carbonate by ground water as it recharges the

aquifer system.


Anastasia Formation

The Anastasia Formation consists of interbedded quartz sands






and coquinoid limestones. The sand beds consist of fine to

medium-grained, variably fossiliferous, calcareous, quartz sand.

The contained fossils are primarily broken and abraided mollusk

shells. The limestone beds, commonly called coquina, are composed

of shell fragments, scattered'whole shells and quartz sand enclosed

in a calcareous matrix, usually sparry calcite cement.

The Anastasia Formation forms the Atlantic Coastal Ridge

through most of its length (White, 1970). Natural exposures of

this unit occur scattered along the east coast from St. Augustine

south to southern Palm Beach County near Boca Raton. South of this

area the Anastasia Formation grades into the Miami Limestone.

Cooke (1945) felt that the Anastasia Formation extended no more

than three miles inland from the Intracoastal Waterway. Field work

by this author (Scott) suggests that the Anastasia may extend as

much as 10 miles inland; although, Schroeder (1954) suggest that

this unit may occur more than 20 miles inland.

The Anastasia Formation forms a portion of the surficial

aquifer system along the eastern coast of the State. Ground water

is withdrawn from the Anastasia Formation in many areas along the

Atlantic Coastal Ridge where, locally, it may be the major source

of ground water. Near the southern extent of the Anastasia

Formation, it forms a portion of the Biscayne aquifer (Hoffmeister,

1974).



Undifferentiated Pleistocene-Holocene Sediments

The sediments referred to as the "undifferentiated

Pleistocene-Holocene sediments" cover much of Florida effectively









hiding most older sediments. Included in this category are marine

"terrace" sediments, eolian sand dunes, fluvial deposits, fresh

water carbonates, peats and a wide variety of sediment mixtures.

These sediments often occur as thin layers overlying older

formations and are not definable as formations. As such, these

sediments have been referred to by many different names including

Pliocene to Recent sands, Pleistocene sands, Pleistocene Terrace

Deposits.

The sediments incorporated in this category are most often

quartz sands. The sands range from fine- to coarse-grained,

nonindurated to poorly indurated and nonclayey to slightly clayey.

Gravel may be present in these sediments in the panhandle area.

Other sediments included in this group include peat deposits, some

clay beds, and freshwater carbonates. The freshwater carbonates

occur in many freshwater springs and in large areas of the

Everglades.

Locally, these sediments may form a portion of the surficial

aquifer system. The greatest thicknesses of these sediments occurs

infilling paleokarst features where more than 300 feet of

undifferentiated Pleistocene-Holocene sediments have been recorded

(Florida Geological Survey, unpublished well data).




Hydrostratigraphy

Florida's ground-water resources occur in a complex lateral

and vertical sequence of Cenozoic sediments comprised of both








siliciclastics and carbonates which underlie the entire state.

Hydrostratigraphically, the section consists of several major

aquifer systems defined on lateral extent, degree of confinement,

and hydrologic parameters of the sediments. The Southeastern

Geological Society's ad hoc Committee on Florida Hydrostratigraphic

Unit Definition (Southeastern Geological Society (SEGS), 1986), in

an attempt to alleviate many of the nomenclatural problems

surrounding Florida's hydrostratigraphic units, defined the

framework of the various aquifer systems occurring in the state.

Most of the geologic community have accepted these definitions and

are using the suggested nomenclature. Aquifers of lesser

importance have been recognized in some areas of the state and are

discussed in the literature on specific areas. This text will

define and characterize only the major aquifer systems discussed by

the SEGS (1986). These systems include the surficial aquifer

system, the intermediate aquifer system or intermediate confining

unit, and the Floridan aquifer system including the Claiborne

aquifer and the sub-Floridan confining unit. Figure 1 indicates

which formations form portions of the various aquifer systems

throughout the state. Miller (1986) provides an excellent, in-

depth discussion of the Floridan aquifer system and the associated

shallower strata. It is recommended that the reader review

Miller's volume for a more detailed description of the ground-water

system in Florida.



Geologic Structures in Relation to Hydrostratigraphy

The occurrence, thickness and, to some extent, the aquifer


___~_~~ I








characteristics are directly related to the structural features

present in a given area. The major positive features affecting the

various aquifer systems include the Ocala Platform, Chattahoochee

Anticline, Sanford High and the St. Johns and Brevard Platforms

(Figure 2). The major negative features include the Gulf Basin,

Apalachicola Embayment, Gulf Trough, Jacksonville Basin, Osceola

Low and the Okeechobee Basin (Figure 2). These structures affected

the deposition and erosion of the later Cenozoic sediments. Older

structures, including the Peninsular Arch and the South Florida

Basin (Figure 2), affected the lower portions of the Cenozoic

section.

The surficial aquifer system is thin to absent on the positive

features. Its thickness increases off the positive structures

reaching maximum thicknesses in the Okeechobee, Jacksonville and

Gulf Basins and the Apalachicola Embayment.

The intermediate aquifer system and intermediate confining

unit also thin onto the positive features. Sediments forming these

units are erosionally absent from the Chattahoochee Anticline,

Ocala Platform and the Sanford High. These units thicken off the

highs, reaching the maximum thicknesses in the basinal areas. As

the sediments of the intermediate aquifer system and confining unit

thicken, permeable beds become more commonly interbedded with the

impermeable strata, resulting in a more fully developed

intermediate aquifer system.

Eocene and Oligocene carbonate sediments of the Floridan

aquifer system are exposed to thinly covered on the Ocala Platform

and the Chattahoochee Anticline. These sediments are covered by a








thin intermediate confining unit on the flanks of the positive

features. In these areas, the carbonates have been exposed to

aggressive ground water developing an extensive karstic terrain.

In the basinal areas, the carbonate sediments have not undergone

such extensive dissolution due to the thick protective cover

provided by the intermediate aquifer system and intermediate

confining unit.


Aquifer Systems and Confining Units

Surficial aquifer system

The SEGS (1986) defines the surficial aquifer system as the

"permeable hydrologic unit contiguous with the land

surface that is comprised principally of unconsolidated

to poorly indurated, (silici)clastic deposits. It also

includes well-indurated carbonate rocks, other than those

of the Floridan aquifer system where the Floridan is at

or near land surface. Rocks making up the surficial

aquifer system belong to all or part of the Upper Miocene

to Holocene Series. It contains the water table, and the

water within it is under mainly unconfined conditions;

but beds of low permeability may cause semi-confined or

locally confined conditions to prevail in its deeper

parts. The lower limit of the surficial aquifer system

coincides with the top of the laterally extensive and

vertically persistent beds of much lower permeability."


The surficial aquifer system occurs throughout most of the








state. In many areas, it is used for small yield domestic and

agricultural water supplies. However, in the western panhandle the

surficial aquifer system, referred to as the Sand and Gravel

Aquifer, supplies important .amounts of water for municipal and

industrial supplies. In the southeastern part of the state, the

surficial aquifer system is called the Biscayne Aquifer and

provides enormous quantities of water for the coastal communities

in this area. Elsewhere in the state, the surficial aquifer system

is of limited importance. Throughout the extent of the surficial

aquifer system, the thickness varies significantly from a feather

edge to more than 350 feet in southeastern Florida and 500 feet in

the western-most panhandle (Scott et al., 1991). The top of the

surficial aquifer system is the natural land surface. The base

occurs where impermeable beds of the intermediate confining unit

and aquifer system begin or, in those areas where the intermediate

is absent, at the top of the Floridan aquifer system carbonates.

In many areas of the state, the surficial aquifer system lies

on a karstified erosional surface developed on Eocene to Miocene

carbonates. Karst processes have also affected the surficial

aquifer system by forming collapse features which filled with

surficial aquifer system sediments and may be in direct hydrologic

contact with the Floridan aquifer system. Karst features also

perforate the surficial aquifer system developing open sinkholes on

the present land surface.


Northwest Florida Water Management District

The surficial aquifer system in the Northwest Florida Water







Management District (NWFWMD) occurs over most of the district. It

is absent only in a limited portion of Wakulla, Leon and Jefferson

Counties at the eastern edge of the district along the western

flank of the Ocala Platform. It is thin to absent on part of the

Chattahoochee Anticline in Jackson and Holmes Counties. Where the

surficial is present it ranges in thickness from less than 10 feet

in the east to more than 500 feet in the northwestern corner of the

area (Scott et al., 1991).

The siliciclastic sediments comprising the surficial aquifer

system in NWFWMD are part of the Citronelle and Miccosukee

Formations, "Coarse Clastics" and the undifferentiated sediments of

Pleistocene-Holocene age (Marsh, 1966; Scott, 1991). These

sediments are primarily quartz sands with varying percentages of

clay. Where the clay content becomes great enough to inhibit the

transmission of ground water, localized impermeable beds may

confine water creating artesian conditions within the surficial

aquifer system. The surficial aquifer system yields greater

quantities of water in the western panhandle where the Citronelle

contains less clay and is thicker than in those areas where the

clayey Miccosukee occurs.


Suwannee River Water Management District

The surficial aquifer system in the Suwannee River Water

Management District (SRWMD) is present in several areas of the

district. According to Ceryak (SRWMD, personal communication,

1991), the surficial aquifer system is present in adjoining

portions of southern Madison, northeastern Taylor and northwestern








Lafayette Counties, western Hamilton County, eastern Suwannee

County, much of Columbia and Union Counties, along the eastern edge

of Bradford County under Trail Ridge and under Waccassassa Flats in

central Gilchrist County. sediments equivalent to the surficial

aquifer system are present throughout much of the district but are

not utilized for water resources. Thicknesses of the surficial

aquifer system range from 10 to 30 feet but may reach 50 to 60 feet

under Trail Ridge. The surficial aquifer system sediments in SRWMD

are part of the undifferentiated sediments. The upper Hawthorn

Group sediments may form the basal part of the system in the

eastern-most portions of the district. These sediments are quartz

sands with varying amounts of clay and carbonate. In localized

areas the clay content of the sediments may form confining beds

within the surficial system.

The base of the surficial aquifer system in the SRWMD occurs

at the top of the impermeable sediments of the Hawthorn Group

throughout much of the district. However, in the eastern portion

of the district, the base may occur within the sediments of the

upper Hawthorn Group. In other areas, the intermediate confining

unit may be absent and the surficial aquifer system may lie

directly on the carbonates of the Floridan aquifer system.


St. Johns River Water Management District

The surficial aquifer system in the St. Johns River Water

Management District (SJRWMD) is an important source of potable

water in Duval and Clay Counties and portions of Alachua and Putnam

Counties. The coastal counties utilize the surficial to varying








degrees with Brevard County being a major user. Eastern Orange

County also utilizes the surficial aquifer system. In other areas

of the district, the surficial aquifer system may be used for

limited domestic supplies. The surficial aquifer system thickness

is highly variable, ranging from a few feet to in excess of 200

feet. The thickest sequence occurs in the Duval County area in the

Jacksonville Basin, where the upper part of the Hawthorn Group

(Coosawhatchie Formation) forms the base of the surficial aquifer

system.

Sediments forming the surficial aquifer system in SJRWMD are

lithostratigraphically assigned to the undifferentiated sediments,

Cypresshead and Nashua Formations, Caloosahatchee Formation-

equivalent shell beds and the Coosawhatchie Formation of the

Hawthorn Group. The undifferentiated sediments and the Cypresshead

Formation consist of quartz sands with varying percentages of clay.

The Nashua Formation and Caloosahatchee Formation-equivalent beds

are composed of varying admixtures of quartz sand, clay, shells and

shell debris. Quartz sands and varying amounts of clay make up the

Coosawhatchie Formation with limestone becoming prominent in

portions of Duval and Nassau Counties. Locally, the sediments

contain sufficient clay to form impermeable beds creating artesian

conditions in the surficial aquifer system.

The base of the surficial aquifer system in the SJRWMD occurs

at the top of the Hawthorn Group when those sediments are

relatively impermeable. Where the Hawthorn (Coosawhatchie

Formation) sediments are sufficiently permeable, the base of the

surficial occurs within these sediments. In the area where the









Hawthorn Group is absent, the surficial aquifer system may extend

down to the top of the Floridan aquifer system, as is the case in

much of Volusia County.



Southwest Florida Water Management District

The surficial aquifer system occurs over much of the Southwest

Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD). It is of generally

limited value in the northern portions of the district and

increases in importance to the south. SWFWMD data indicates that

the surficial aquifer system is thin over much of the district

(Scott et al., 1991). Thicknesses range from less than 25 feet in

much of the northern part of the district on the Ocala Platform to

25 to 50 feet in the southern area and more than 250 feet under the

Lake Wales Ridge.

Surficial aquifer system sediments in SWFWMD belong to the

undifferentiated sediments in the northern half of the district.

In the southern half of SWFWMD the sediments include the Tamiami,

Caloosahatchee and Fort Thompson Formations. Along the Lake Wales

Ridge, the surficial aquifer system is comprised of sediments

belonging to the Cypresshead Formation and the undifferentiated

sediments. In a limited area in central SWFWMD, the Bone Valley

Member of the Peace River Formation, Hawthorn Group forms part of

the surficial aquifer system. The sediments in these units

generally consist of quartz sand with varying percentages of clay

and shell except in the Bone Valley Member where phosphate forms a

significant proportion of the sediment. Vacher et al. (1990)

characterize the sediments as quartz sand with less than 10 percent


_51








clay over much of the district. They also show shell content of

the surficial aquifer system increasing toward the coast and to the

south in the southern half of the district.

The base of the surficial aquifer system occurs at the top of

the impermeable sediments overlying the carbonates of the Floridan

aquifer system in the northern part of the district. When

impermeable sediments of the Hawthorn Group are subjacent to the

undifferentiated sediments they form the base of the surficial.

The Hawthorn Group lies subjacent to the Cypresshead Formation

under th- Lake Wales Ridge and forms the base of the system. The

Hawthorn Group sediments also form the base of the surficial

aquifer system in southern SWFWMD where the Hawthorn underlies the

Tamiami, Caloosahatchee and Fort Thompson Formations.



South Florida Water Management District

The surficial aquifer system is widespread in the South

Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) constituting an important

water resource. Although the surficial aquifer system is present

over much of the district, it is the most important source of

ground water in the southeastern portion of SFWMD, in Dade, Broward

and Palm Beach Counties. In Lee, Hendry and Collier Counties, the

surficial provides significant quantities of potable water for

domestic and agricultural uses. Throughout the district, the

surficial aquifer system varies in thickness from a few feet to

more than 400 feet thick.

The sediments comprising the surficial aquifer system are from

several lithostratigraphic units. In the north-central SFWMD area,








the surficial occurs in the undifferentiated sediments, Cypresshead

Formation and shell beds of the Caloosahatachee/Fort Thompson

Formations. In the western part of SFWMD, sediments of the

Tamiami, Caloosahatchee and Fort Thompson Formations and the

undifferentiated sediments make up the system. In the eastern area

of SFWMD, the surficial aquifer system, in part referred to as the

Biscayne Aquifer, consists of sediments from the Anastasia

Formation, Miami and Key Largo Limestones, Fort Thompson Formation,

and Caloosahatchee and Tamiami-equivalent sediments. In SFWMD, the

base of the surficial system occurs at the first impermeable

sediments in the Hawthorn Group. Occasionally, the upper Hawthorn

Group sediments may form the basal portion of the surficial.

The lithostratigraphic units forming the surficial aquifer

system consist of a complex array of facies. The sediments range

from quartz sands to limestones with varying admixtures of shell

and clay. As a result of the variability, the quality of the

surficial aquifer system in SFWMD changes dramatically from place

to place. Numerous investigations of these sediments have

discussed the variable nature of the aquifer characteristics (for

example, Causaras, 1985;. Wedderburn et al., 1982; Shaw and Trost,

1984; Knapp et al., 1986; Smith and Adams, 1988).



Intermediate Aquifer System and Intermediate Confining Unit

The SEGS (1986) defines the intermediate aquifer system or

intermediate confining system as including

"all rocks that lie between and collectively retard the

exchange of water between the overlying surficial aquifer








exchange of water between the overlying surficial aquifer

system and the underlying Floridan aquifer system. These

rocks in general consist of fine grained (silici)clastic

deposits interlayered with carbonate strata belonging to

all or parts of the Miocene and younger Series. In

places poorly-yielding to non-water-yielding strata

mainly occur and there the term intermediate confining

unit applies. In other places, one or more low to

moderate-yielding aquifers may be interlayered with

relatively impermeable confining beds; there the term

intermediate aquifer system applies. The aquifers within

this system contain water under confined conditions."

"The top of the intermediate aquifer system or

intermediate confining unit coincides with the base of

the surficial aquifer system. The base of the

intermediate aquifer is at the top of the vertically

persistent permeable carbonate section that comprises the

Floridan aquifer system, or, in other words, that place

in the section where (silici)clastic layers of

significant thickness are absent and permeable carbonate

rocks are dominant."

The intermediate aquifer system or intermediate confining unit

occurs over much of the state. It is absent from those areas where

it was removed by erosion and the surficial aquifer system

sediments, if present, lie immediately suprajacent to the

carbonates of the Floridan aquifer system. Springs are a common

feature of these areas. Surrounding the areas where these







sediments are missing, the intermediate aquifer system or

intermediate confining unit is often perforated by karst features.

Where this condition exists, the intermediate aquifer system and

the intermediate confining unit allow water to pass through into

the Floridan aquifer system or into the surficial aquifer system.

The regional significance of the intermediate aquifer system

is quite limited. Statewide, this section is referred to as the

intermediate confining unit. It serves to confine the Floridan

aquifer system and forms the base of the surficial aquifer system.

The sediments comprising this section are predominantly

siliciclastic (quartz sand, silt and clay) with varying proportions

of carbonates (limestone and dolostone) present. Much of the

intermediate confining unit was deposited during the Miocene and

Early Pliocene. It is interesting to note that in some areas

Miller (1986) has included low permeability Oligocene and Eocene

carbonates in contact with the Miocene sediments as part of the

intermediate confining unit.

The top of the intermediate aquifer system or intermediate

confining unit ranges from more than 350 feet below sea level to

greater than 225 feet above sea level. Miller (1986) cites

thicknesses of the intermediate confining unit (his upper confining

unit) ranging from very thin or absent to greater than 1000 feet.


Northwest Florida Water Management District

The intermediate confining unit occurs over much of the NWFWMD

serving to effectively confine the Floridan aquifer system. It is

thin to absent over the Chattahoochee Anticline in portions of







Jackson and Holmes Counties. The intermediate confining unit is

also thin to absent in eastern Wakulla, southeastern Leon and

southern Jefferson Counties. The intermediate confining unit

thickens dramatically under the western end of NWFWMD in Escambia

County and in the Apalachicola Embayment under Gulf and Franklin

Counties. Thicknesses range from less than 10 feet to greater than

1000 feet.

The ability of the intermediate confining unit to effectively

confine the subjacent Floridan aquifer system is impaired in those

areas where it has been breached by karst development. These areas

include portions of Jackson, Holmes, Washington, Walton, Leon and

Wakulla Counties (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985).

Siliciclastic sediments predominate in the intermediate

confining unit in NWFWMD. Carbonate sediments are present in the

sediments of the Apalachicola Embayment and east of the

Apalachicola River. In western NWFWMD, the confining unit is the

Pensacola Clay which grades eastward into the Alum Bluff Group.

Further east, generally east of the Apalachicola River, the

Hawthorn Group forms the intermediate confining unit. Within the

Apalachicola Embayment, portions of the Intracoastal Formation form

the intermediate confining unit.

The intermediate aquifer system is generally not an important

water-bearing unit in NWFWMD. Permeable beds of limited extent are

present locally and may provide limited amounts of water to small,

domestic wells. The intermediate aquifer system/confining unit

acts as an aquifer system primarily east of the Choctawhatchee

River (Wagner, 1988). The permeable zones utilized for ground








water are siliciclastic and carbonate beds in the Intracoastal

Formation (Barr and Wagner, 1981), the Alum Bluff Group and, to a

very limited extent, the Hawthorn Group.


Suwannee River Water Management District

The intermediate confining unit is present in SRWMD under the

Northern Highlands. This includes portions or all of Jefferson,

Madison, Taylor, Lafayette, Hamilton, Suwannee, Columbia, Baker,

Bradford, Union and Alachua Counties. Within this area, the

thickness of the intermediate confining unit may exceed 300 feet

(Scott, 1988) and confined to semiconfined conditions exist. It is

thin to absent on the Ocala Platform and thickens on its flanks

reaching the greatest thickness in the Jacksonville Basin. Karst

features are common throughout this area except in the northeastern

part of SRWMD (parts of Baker, Bradford and Union Counties).

Outliers and sinkhole fill consisting of the sediments of the

intermediate confining unit are common in the areas where the unit

is absent.

Siliciclastic sediments dominate the intermediate confining

unit in SRWMD. These sediments most often are part of the Hawthorn

Group or materials that are residual from it ("Alachua Formation").

The intermediate aquifer system is interbedded with the

impermeable beds of the intermediate confining unit. The

intermediate aquifer system is developed in the sands and

carbonates of the Hawthorn Group and attains a thickness of at

least 234 feet in the northeastern portion of the district (Ceryak

et al., 1983).








St. Johns River Water Management District

The intermediate confining unit and intermediate aquifer

system occur throughout the SJRWMD except along the western

district boundary in parts of Marion and Alachua Counties on the

Ocala Platform. The combined confining unit and aquifer system

ranges in thickness from less than ten feet to more than 500 feet.

It is thickest in the Jacksonville Basin in northeastern SJRWMD. It

thins over the St. Johns Platform, Sanford High and Brevard

Platform in the central portion of the district then thickens into

the Osceola Low and the Okeechobee Basin in southern SJRWMD.

The intermediate confining unit and intermediate aquifer

system consist primarily of interbedded siliciclastic and carbonate

sediments of the Hawthorn Group. Additionally, Plio-Pleistocene

siliciclastic sediments suprajacent to the Hawthorn Group may act

as part or, in the areas where the Hawthorn sediments are absent,

the entire intermediate confining unit. The Hawthorn Group

sediments are absent over much of the Sanford High and limited

portions of the St. Johns and Brevard Platforms in southern Flagler

County, much of Volusia County and northern Brevard County.

Karst conduits breaching the intermediate aquifer system and

intermediate confining unit are common in much of the SJRWMD.

Sinclair and Stewart (1985) indicate that the karst features are

most abundant in parts of Clay, Putnam, Alachua, St. Johns,

Flagler, Marion, Volusia, Lake, Seminole, Orange, Osceloa and Polk

Counties. Small karst features are present in portions or all of

Volusia, Seminole, Orange, Brevard, Osceloa and Indian River

Counties. In Baker, Nassau, Duval and parts of Clay and St. Johns









Counties karst features are very few in number and the intermediate

confining unit is not often breached.

The intermediate aquifer system is utilized for limited

domestic and agricultural supplies. Permeable strata in the

Hawthorn Group often exhibits rapid lateral and vertical

variability resulting in a limited areal distribution of the water-

producing units. The intermediate aquifer system is most often

utilized in Nassau, Duval, Baker, St. Johns and Clay Counties where

the Hawthorn Group sediments are thickest, infilling the

Jacksonville Basin.


Southwest Florida Water Management District

The intermediate confining unit and intermediate aquifer

system are present throughout most of SWFWMD (Buono et al., 1979).

Although the sediments comprising this section are absent to very

thin in the northern half of SWFWMD, they thicken to more than 650

feet in the southern end of the district (Buono et al., 1979;

Scott, 1988). In the northern half of the district, the section is

generally the intermediate confining unit and is thin to absent on

the southern end of the Ocala Platform. In the southern half of

SWFWMD, approximately from northern Polk and Hillsborough Counties

south, the intermediate confining unit also contains permeable

sediments forming the intermediate aquifer system. In this area,

the sediments thicken to the south into the Okeechobee Basin (Buono
et al., 1979; Scott, 1988).

Siliciclastic and carbonate sediments of the Hawthorn Group

comprise the majority of the intermediate confining unit and








intermediate aquifer system in SWFWMD. In addition, some post-

Hawthorn siliciclastics may form a limited portion of the

intermediate confining unit in the northern half of the district.

In the northern portion of the district, clayey sediments lying on

the Floridan aquifer system carbonates belong in part in the

Hawthorn Group and in part may be reworked Hawthorn sediments along

with residuum from dissolution of carbonates.

Breaching of the intermediate confining unit and the

intermediate aquifer system by karst features is common in the

northern half of the district and along the Lake Wales Ridge in

Polk County (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985). The southern portion of

SWFWMD has limited karst development (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985)

and few karst conduits penetrate the intermediate confining unit

and intermediate aquifer system.

The intermediate aquifer system is utilized in the southern

half of SWFWMD and becomes most important at the southern end of

the district where the Floridan aquifer system is deeply buried and

highly mineralized. The permeable strata of the Hawthorn Group and

portions of the Tamiami Formation form the water-producing horizons

providing variable quantities of ground water (Sutcliffe, 1975).


South Florida Water Management District

The intermediate confining unit and the intermediate aquifer

system occur throughout SFWMD. However, the intermediate aquifer

system is utilized in a limited number of counties along the

western edge of the district. This section ranges in thickness

from approximately 500 feet in the northern SFWMD area to more than








900 feet in the southernmost portion of the district (Scott, 1988).

Much of the SFWMD area lies in the Okeechobee Basin.

Interbedded siliciclastic and carbonate sediments from the

Hawthorn Group form the intermediate confining unit and

intermediate aquifer system in SFWMD. Previously, .some of the

sediments currently included in the intermediate confining unit and

intermediate aquifer system along the west coast were placed in the

Tamiami Formation but are now considered part of the Hawthorn Group

(Missimer, 1978; Wedderburn et al., 1982; Scott,1988). In the

eastern part of the district, Tamiami-equivalent sediments may form

the top of the intermediate confining unit (Causaras, 1985).

The importance of the intermediate confining unit and

intermediate aquifer system in the western part of SFWMD has led to

a number of studies in Charlotte, Lee, Hendry and Collier Counties

(Sutcliffe, 1975; Wedderburn et al., 1982; Knapp et al., 1986;

Smith and Adams, 1988;). There are three principle producing zones

within the intermediate aquifer system in this area, the "Sandstone

aquifer" named by Boggess and Missimer (1975), the "mid-Hawthorn

aquifer" of Wedderburn et al. (1982) and the "lower-Hawthorn

aquifer" of Knapp et al. (1984). These producing zones have been

very important to the development of southwestern Florida.


Floridan Aquifer System

The SEGS (1986) defines the Floridan aquifer system as a

"thick carbonate sequence which includes all or part of

the Paleocene to Early [sic] Miocene Series and functions

regionally as a water-yielding hydraulic unit. Where







overlain by either the intermediate aquifer system or the

intermediate confining unit, the Floridan contains water

under confined conditions. Where overlain directly by

the surficial aquifer system, the Floridan may or may not

contain water under confined conditions..."

"The top of the aquifer system generally coincides

with the absence of significant thicknesses of

(silici)clastics from the section and with the top of the

vertically persistent permeable carbonate section. For

the most part, the top of the aquifer system coincides

with the top of the Suwannee Limestone, where present, or

the top of the Ocala Group (Limestone)."

In limited areas the Avon Park Formation forms the top of the

aquifer system. Sediments of the Arcadia Formation (Hawthorn

Group), the Bruce Creek Limestone, the St. Marks Formation or the

Tampa Member of the Arcadia Formation may form the top of the

Floridan aquifer system (SEGS, 1986).

The base of the aquifer system in panhandle Florida is

at the gradational contact with the fine-grained

(silici)clastic rocks belonging to the Middle Eocene

Series. In peninsular Florida, the base coincides with

the appearance of the regionally persistent sequence of

anhydrite beds that lies near the top of the Cedar Keys

Limestone (Formation) (SEGS, 1986)."

The Floridan aquifer system exhibits extreme variations in

permeability resulting from a combination of original depositional

conditions, diagenesis, structural features and dissolution of







carbonates and evaporites (Miller, 1986). The system has been

extensively altered by karst processes in some areas of the state.

Dissolutional and diagenetic processes have been extremely

important in the development of the Floridan aquifer system from

carbonate sediments deposited during the Paleocene through Early

Miocene.

The thickness and lithology of the sediments suprajacent to

the Floridan determine the surficial expression of the karst

processes. On the Ocala Platform from Hillsborough and Polk

Counties north to the state line, then westward into Leon and

Wakulla Counties and on the Chattahoochee Anticline in Jackson and

Washington Counties, carbonate sediments of the Floridan aquifer

system crop out or are covered by a thin layer of unconsolidated

siliciclastics (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985). In these areas, the

carbonates have been exposed to extensive dissolution by aggressive

ground waters percolating downward from land surface. Often the

karst geomorphology has reached a relatively mature stage of

development resulting in numerous surface depressions which often

coalesce. The Floridan aquifer system exhibits well developed

cavernous porosity and conduit flow paths. Most of Florida's major

springs occur in this zone including Wakulla and Silver Springs.

The carbonates of the Floridan aquifer system lie beneath a

variable thickness of post-Floridan siliciclastics and carbonates

of the intermediate confining unit, intermediate aquifer system and

the surficial aquifer system on the flanks of the Ocala Platform

and the Chattahoochee Anticline. Although karst processes have

affected the sediments of the Floridan in these areas, forming







dissolutional conduits and caverns, the karst topography is not as

well developed as in the areas of thin cover. However, in these

areas the karst features are often of large diameter and depth due

to overburden thickness (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985).

The Floridan aquifer system lies subjacent to a thick sequence

of post-Floridan sediments in the Okeechobee Basin, Jacksonville

Basin, Gulf Trough, Apalachicola Embayment and the Gulf Basin of

the western panhandle. In these areas, the carbonates of the

Floridan have apparently not been subjected to extensive

karstification. However, subsurface investigations -of the

limestones indicate some karstic modification of the sediments

during subaerial exposure prior to the deposition of the sediments

of the intermediate confining unit and intermediate aquifer system

(U. Hamms and D. Budd, University of Colorado, personal

communication, 1991).

The elevation of the top of the Floridan aquifer system varies

significantly throughout the state. The top occurs at elevations

in excess of 100 feet above National Geodetic Vertical Datum (NGVD)

on the Ocala Platform and Chattahoochee Anticline to depths greater

than 1100 feet below NGVD in southern Florida and 1500 feet below

NGVD in the western-most panhandle (Miller, 1986). The thickness

of the Floridan varies from less than 100 feet in the western half

of the panhandle to in- excess of 3500 feet in southwestern

peninsular Florida (Miller, 1986).

The base of the Floridan aquifer system, the sub-Floridan

confining unit, varies stratigraphically throughout the state. The

SEGS (1986) indicates that the base of the Floridan in the








panhandle occurs in the Middle Eocene approximately at the top of

the Claiborne Group. The base of the system in the peninsula

generally is considered to occur within or near the top of the

Paleocene Cedar Keys Formation (SEGS, 1986). Miller (1986)

provides a more detailed picture of the variability of the

stratigraphic positioning of the Floridan aquifer system base but

indicates the same general regional trends.



Northwest Florida Water Management District

The Floridan aquifer system in NWFWMD supplies more than 90

percent of the water demand and is utilized in all the counties in

the district except Escambia and part of Santa Rosa Counties

(Wagner, 1988). It underlies the entire district but is too saline

for potable water 'in the western end of the panhandle. The water

quality over a broad area corresponding to the Apalachicola

Embayment and the Gulf Trough and the coastal zone may be affected

by the upcoming of mineralized waters (Scott et al., 1991).

The top of the Floridan aquifer system in NWFWMD varies in

elevation from 150 feet above NGVD in Jackson and Holmes Counties

to greater than 1500 feet below NGVD in Escambia County (Miller,

1986; Scott et al., 1991). The thickness of the aquifer system

ranges from approximately 100 feet thick in portions of Jackson and

Holmes Counties on the Chattahoochee Anticline to more than 2800

feet thick in Franklin County in the Apalachicola Embayment (Scott

et al., 1991).

In the western part of the district, the Floridan aquifer

system is subdivided into an upper and lower aquifer separated by






a. confining unit, the Bucatunna Clay. The confining unit thins and

pinches out towards the east in Okaloosa County, where the Floridan

becomes a single aquifer system (Marsh, 1966; Scott et al., 1991).

Carbonate sediments dominate the Floridan aquifer system with

minor occurrences of siliciclastics. The siliciclastics generally

occur intimately mixed with the carbonates and are more common in

the upper portion of the aquifer system. Within the district, the

Floridan aquifer system is composed of the Ocala, Marianna,

Suwannee, Chickasawhay, and Bruce Creek Limestones and the St.

Marks and ChattahoocAee Formations.

Stratigraphically, the base of the Floridan aquifer system

varies significantly throughout NWFWMD. In the Pensacola area, the

base occurs within the Upper Eocene Ocala Limestone (Miller, 1986).

Under the eastern end of the district, the base falls within the

Paleocene Cedar Keys Formation. The depth to the base of the

Floridan varies from -100 NGVD on the Chattahoochee Anticline to

-3100 feet NGVD in the Apalachicola Embayment (Miller, 1986).

The Claiborne aquifer has been recognized within the sub-

Floridan confining unit. The total extent of this aquifer is not

known and it is not often utilized (Allen, 1987). It is composed

of carbonate and siliciclastic sediments of the Claiborne Group.

The effects of karstification are most intense on and
surrounding the Chattahoochee Anticline in Jackson, Holmes and

Washington Counties and on the flank of the Ocala Platform in Leon

and Wakulla Counties. In these areas, the aquifer system has been

extensively altered by dissolution and often has many direct

conduits from the surface into the Floridan. An extensive,






underwater conduit mapping project of the Woodville Karst Plain by

the Woodville Karst Plain Project (Parker Turner, Florida State

University, personal communication, 1991) is currently documenting

the length and complexity of the dissolutional features of the

area.




Suwannee River Water Management District

The Floridan aquifer system occurs throughout the SRWMD

providing the vast majority of the water supplies. The top of the

Floridan ranges from greater than 100 feet above NGVD in Jefferson

County to more than 300 feet below NGVD in Bradford County (Scott

et al., 1991). The thickness ranges from approximately 1100 feet

in northern Jefferson County to 2200 feet in southern Jefferson

County (Miller, 1986). The thicknesses of the Floridan aquifer

system sediments in SRWMD show the effects of the Apalachicola

Embayment and Gulf Trough in Jefferson County. These sediments

also exhibit the thicker carbonate sequence deposited in the

peninsular area.

Carbonate sediments deposited during the Paleocene through the

Early Miocene comprise the Floridan aquifer system in SRWMD. The

base of the system occurs near the top of the Paleocene Cedar Keys

Formation (Miller, 1986). Carbonates of the Oldsmar and Avon Park

Formations, the Ocala and Suwannee Limestones and the St. Marks

Formation comprise the Floridan aquifer system in the district.

The Suwannee Limestone forms a portion of the Floridan in

approximately one half of the district while the St. Marks







Formation occurs in limited areas. When the Suwannee Limestone and

the St. Marks Formation are absent, the Ocala Limestone forms the

top of the system. In the southern portion of the district, the

Ocala Limestone is absent due to erosion and the Avon Park

Formation forms the top of the system.

The top of the sub-Floridan confining unit generally occurs

within the Cedar Keys Formation throughout SRWMD (Miller, 1986).

The positioning of the permeability barrier shifts locally within

the upper part of the Cedar Keys Formation from the top of the unit

to some distance below the top. The depth to the sub-Floridan

confining unit varies from -1200 feet NGVD on the Ocala Platform to

-2100 feet on the flank of the Gulf Trough (Miller, 1986).

The sediments of the Floridan aquifer system throughout SRWMD

have been greatly affected by karstification. Sinkholes are very

common in most areas and numerous springs are scattered across the

district. The only area of minor karstification is in northern-

most Columbia and Baker Counties.


St. Johns River Water Management District

The Floridan aquifer system is present throughout the SJRWMD

containing potable water supplies in most areas. Salt water

intrusion or upwelling is a concern in many of the coastal areas

and along the St. Johns River Valley (Scott et al., 1991).

The top of the Floridan aquifer system in SJRWMD occurs at the

highest elevations on the flank of the Ocala Platform in Alachua

and Marion Counties. In this area, the uppermost Floridan

sediments range from 50 to more than 100 feet above NGVD. The









upper surface of the system dips into the Jacksonville Basin, in

the northern part of SJRWMD, where it may be more than -550 feet

NGVD. To the south, the top of the Floridan reaches more than -350

feet NGVD (Scott et al., 1991). The thickness of the system ranges

from approximately 1500 feet in Baker County (northwestern SJRWMD)

to 2900 feet in southern Brevard County (Miller, 1986).

Carbonate sediments dominate .the Floridan aquifer system

within the district. Siliciclastic sediments, when present, occur

mixed in carbonate lithologies and predominantly in the uppermost

portion of the Floridan. The Ocala Limestone forms the top of the

aquifer system over the majority of the district. In very limited

areas of Volusia and Orange Counties, the Avon Park Formation

occurs at the top of the Floridan. Sediments of Oligocene age

occur at the top of the aquifer system along the east coast in

southernmost Brevard County and in Indian River County. Miller

(1986) shows small outliers of Suwannee Limestone at the top of the

Floridan in the northern portion of the district. The majority of

the aquifer system is comprised of the Avon Park and Oldsmar

Formations.

The sub-Floridan confining unit occurs within the Cedar Keys

Formation throughout the district. The positioning of the base of

the Floridan varies from the top of the Cedar Keys Formation to

within the upper portion of the formation (Miller, 1986). The top

of the sub-Floridan confining unit varies from -1600 feet NGVD on

the flank of the Ocala Platform to -3200 feet NGVD in the

Jacksonville Basin and the Okeechobee Basin (Miller, 1986).

Karst processes have significantly altered the carbonates of







the Floridan aquifer system in much of the SJRWMD. Karst features

are common in much of the central and western portions of the

district (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985). The karstification in these

areas is related to dissolution of the Ocala Limestone. In the

southern half of the district, dissolution of the carbonate

fraction of the Plio-Pleistocene sediments is responsible for the

development of most of the karst features.


Southwest Florida Water Management District

The Floridan aquifer system underlies the entire SWFWMD area

and contains plentiful, potable water supplies throughout most of

the district. Areas of mineralized water along the coast and in

portions of Charlotte and Sarasota Counties limit the availability

of fresh water from the Floridan in these areas (Scott et al.,

1991).

The top of the Floridan aquifer system in the SWFWMD displays

two distinct elevational trends. The northern two thirds of the

district (from central Polk and Hillsborough Counties northward) is

relatively flat with elevations varying from sea level to between

100 and 150 feet above NGVD. The top of the Floridan in the

southern one third of the district dips distinctly to the south

dropping from sea level to more than 750 feet below NGVD along the

southern district boundary (Scott et al., 1991). These trends are

related to the positions of the Ocala Platform and the northern

edge of the Okeechobee Basin.

The thickness of the aquifer system also displays distinct

trends. The Floridan is more than 1400 feet thick in the northern-








most portion of the district and thins southward across the

northern one third of SWFWMD to approximately 600 feet thick

(Wolansky and Garbode, 1981). From the thinnest point of the

Floridan aquifer system, it thickens into the Okeechobee Basin

southward, reaching more than 2400 feet thick in the SWFWMD part of

Highlands County (Wolansky and Garbode, 1981).

As in the rest of the peninsula, carbonate sediments dominate

the Floridan aquifer system in SWFWMD. Siliciclastic-bearing

carbonates and siliciclastic units in the basal Hawthorn Group may

form the upper portion of the Floridan in part of the southern

portion of SWFWMD. In much of the district, the Suwannee Limestone

forms the top of the Floridan. In the northern most portion of

SWFWMD, the Ocala Limestone and, in limited areas, the Avon Park

Formation comprise the top of the aquifer system. The Avon Park

and Oldsmar Formations form the main body of the Floridan in the

district. The sub-Floridan confining unit occurs in the upper

Cedar Keys Formation and varies from -1900 feet NGVD on the Ocala

Platform to -4100 feet NGVD in the Okeechobee Basin (Miller, 1986).

Karstic alteration of the Floridan aquifer system has occurred
throughout much of the district. In the southern portion of

SWFWMD, where the Hawthorn Group thickens in the Okeechobee Basin,

karst features are not as abundant (Sinclair and Stewart, 1985).

In the northern two-thirds of the district and along the Lake Wales

Ridge, karst features are quite common. Surficial karst features

in much of southern SWFWMD are the result of dissolution of

carbonate sediments and shell material in the Miocene through

Pleistocene units.










South Florida Water Management District

Potable water supplies within the Floridan aquifer system in

SFWMD are limited to the northern part of the district. The

sediments of the Floridan occur throughout the district but in many

areas do not contain acceptable quality water.

The top of the Floridan aquifer system occurs at elevations

ranging from sea level in the northern most edge of the district

(Orange County) to greater than 1100 feet below NGVD in

southwestern SFWMD (Miller, 1986). Most of this area lies in the

Okeechobee Basin. The thickness of the Floridan ranges from less

than 2300 feet in Orange County to more than 3400 feet under parts

of Palm Beach and Martin Counties and more than 3500 feet under

western Lee County (Miller, 1986).

A thick sequence of carbonate sediments containing some beds

of siliciclastics and siliciclastic-rich carbonates form the

Floridan aquifer system in SFWMD. The majority of the sediments

comprising the Floridan are carbonates with little to no

siliciclastics. However, in southwestern Florida, sand beds have

been noted in the Ocala Limestone (Missimer, personal

communication, 1991). Siliciclastic-bearing carbonates and a few

siliciclastic beds from the basal Hawthorn Group may form the upper

beds of the Floridan aquifer system in some areas of the district.

In general, the Suwannee Limestone forms the upper unit of the

aquifer system with the Ocala Limestone and the Avon Park, Oldsmar

and upper Cedar Keys Formations comprising the main mass of the

system. The base of the Floridan aquifer system, the top of the

sub-Floridan confining unit, occurs within the upper portion of the


__


, ,









Cedar Keys Formation (Miller, 1986). The top of the sub-Floridan

confining unit ranges from -3000 feet NGVD on the northern edge of

the Okeechobee Basin to -4400 feet NGVD in the deeper portion of

the Okeechobee Basin.

The development of karst features in the sediments of the

Floridan aquifer system in SFWMD has not been extensive.

Throughout much of the district, the Floridan contains saline

waters and has not been flushed by fresh water. The Floridan

aquifer system is also buried by as much as 1100 feet of confining

beds and other aquifer systems under much of SFWMD.



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FLRD GEOLOSk ( IC SUfRiW


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Cedar Keys Formation (Miller, 1986). The top of the sub-Floridan

confining unit ranges from -3000 feet NGVD on the northern edge of

the Okeechobee Basin to -4400 feet NGVD in the deeper portion of

the Okeechobee Basin.

The development of karst features in the sediments of the

Floridan aquifer system in SFWMD has not been extensive.

Throughout much of the district, the Floridan contains saline

waters and has not been flushed by fresh water. The Floridan

aquifer system is also buried by as much as 1100 feet of confining

beds and other aquifer systems under much of SFWMD.



REFERENCES



Allen, T.W., 1987, Hydrogeology of the Holmes, Jackson and
Washington Counties area, Florida: Florida State University
(MS thesis), 183p.

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