Title: Methods
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/WL00003014/00001
 Material Information
Title: Methods
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Publisher: Golden Gates Estates Study Committee
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
Abstract: Richard Hamann's Collection - Methods
General Note: Box 12, Folder 4 ( Golden Gate Estates Redevelopment Study - Phase I - 1975 ), Item 8
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: WL00003014
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Holding Location: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text


Certain circumstances were largely self-evident
prior to the start of the project: (1) the extent and true
nature of the Golden Gate Estates drainage basin was not
well known; (2) a major portion of the known drainage basin
was committed to future urban development in single family
homesites; (3) extensive drainage canal networks had been
constructed to allow this development; (4) agricultural
activities on adjacent lands within the drainage basin were
adversely affected by the canal system; (5) the drainage
effects were not compatible with maintenance of estuarine
or freshwater systems at productive levels; (6) severe
fires, as a result of overdrainage, had destroyed forest
resources and depleted organic soil reserves; (7) recharge
of the aquifer may have been interrupted or diminished,
this could cause potential shortages of potable water in
future years; (8) existing vegetation maps and topographical
data were inadequate for planning purposes; (9) hydrological
data concerning local rainfall, evaporation, transpiration
and groundwater flows were not available and could not be
obtained within the duration of the project.
It was felt that the research objectives could be
most effectively achieved by using existing natural resource
features, principally vegetation, as indicators of past
and present conditions of hydroperiod and surface water
movements. Consequently, efforts were centered upon assessing
the present condition of natural communities, defining as
closely as possible the present and historical boundaries of
the water-shed, and identifying sloughs which were formerly
major water storage areas or flow-ways. Upon these findings,
recommendations and advice on water management strategies and
land use patterns could be developed.

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Assembly of available published and unpublished
information, aerial photography, and maps, constituted the
first task. Relatively little biological information exists
dealing specifically with the project area, and available
vegetation maps prepared between 1943 and 1975 were inadequate
for present purposes, either because of lack of detail or
because of errors in interpretation. The soil survey maps
produced by Leighty et al. (1954) proved to be of excellent
quality, and provided useful guidance in the vegetation
The aerial photography from the county tax map
series at a scale of 1"=400' was used as the basis for field
mapping of vegetation communities. Comparison with pre-
drainage conditions was provided by the U.S.D.A. Soil
Conservation Service aerial series (1940). Color-enhanced
simulated infra-red satellite photography (E.R.T.S.) provided
a useful overview.
Delineation and mapping of vegetation community
types was accomplished by extensive use of the Collier County
helicopter. The entire Golden Gate system was overflown on
three occasions at altitudes between 250 and 300 feet.
Aerial observations thus obtained were subsequently verified
and amplified by ground truth on foot and by car. Recorded
observations were supplemented by 35 mm color photography at
selected sites. As a further aid to interpretation, oblique
false color infra-red photographs were taken from the helicopter
between Golden Gate Boulevard and the Fahka Union Canal
outfall at U. S. 41.
During on-ground field trips, extensive observations
on location and occurrence of plants, mammals, birds and
reptiles were made. Fish collections were made from specific
sites in farm ditches. Soil moisture content was measured
from representative communities, numerous soil borings were
made to depths of 6 feet, water level measurements were taken

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at weirs along Stewart Boulevard, and historic water level
indicators were obtained from cypress and cabbage palm trunks
throughout the system.
Quantification of species mix, size and density of
representative plant communities was accomplished by the point
quarter method at seven locations (Cox, 1972). Age and compa-
rative growth rates of cypress, maple and pine was determined
for a few samples from wood cores obtained with an increment
borer. Potential or actual environmental stress, as indicated
by relative air humidity, was assessed by synchronous
observations using Livingston atmometers at selected sites
during the dry season.
An assessment of present levels of fire damage was
obtained by helicopter overflight in late March when the cypress
trees had emerged from winter dormancy. Subjective estimates
of the percentage recovery were made during the overflight, and
were subsequently spot-checked on-ground.

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