Title: Florida Lakewatch newsletter
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00055470/00041
 Material Information
Title: Florida Lakewatch newsletter
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Florida LAKEWATCH
Publisher: Dept. of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences of the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) at the University of Florida (UF)
Place of Publication: Gainesville, FL
Publication Date: 2010
Copyright Date: 2010
Frequency: irregular
completely irregular
Subject: Lakes -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
periodical   ( marcgt )
General Note: Description based on v. 9 (spring 1997); title from caption.
General Note: Latest issue consulted: v. 33 (2006).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00055470
Volume ID: VID00041
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 65383070
lccn - 2006229159

Full Text

The Gulf Coast Oil Spil


Bulldozers closing the outlet to the Gulf of Mexico from Lake Powell in Bay County.

It has been five months
since the explosion and fire
on an offshore oil-drilling
platform Deepwater Horizon
on April 20 in the Gulf of
Mexico. Three months later,
on August the 5thr BP
pressure tested their latest

attempt, the static kill cement
plug and determined that it
was a success and that no
more oil would flow into the
Gulf from the Deepwater
Horizon well.
The National Incident

Command (NIC) assembled
interagency scientific experts
to estimate the quantity of oil
that was released from the

v IFASFCari2

'F or ia-

Wildlife Conservation
Commission (FWC)
conducted post-spill fish and
wildlife assessments,
including testing for
contamination in sediments,
fish and shellfish and
evaluated critical habitat for
fish, shorebird and sea
turtle nesting areas that
might be impacted by the
oil spill. In addition the Sea
Grant Programs of FL, GA,
NC and SC held two "oil spill
summits" where 10 leading
experts from each
respective state university
and one NOAA expert
addressed the issue of
physical, chemical and
biological transformation of
oil as it moves from the Gulf
of Mexico to the South
Atla ntic.

On the local level County
Governments in the Florida
Panhandle responded with

well in that three month plus
interval, and additionally the
fate of that oil. These experts
estimated that the Deepwater
Horizon Well released 4.9
million barrels or 205,800,000
gallons of oil into the Gulf of

They also estimated that
burning, skimming and direct
recovery from the wellhead
removed 25% of the oil from
the Gulf with another 25%
being evaporated and
dissolved naturally.
Additionally, they estimated
that 24% was dispersed as
microscopic droplets in Gulf
waters. This leaves an
estimated 26% (1.27 million
barrels or 53,508,000 gallons)
of the total oil spilled in the
Gulf as light sheen or in
weathered tar balls. Some of
this residual oil has washed
ashore, been collected from
shore, or buried in sand and
sediments. Oil in the residual
and dispersed categories will
continue to degrade and along
with effects of chemical
dispersants, are being studied
and mitigating actions taken
where possible.

Given the magnitude of this
disaster, what has been and is
being done in Florida to help
mitigate the effects of this
spill? In Florida, the
Department of Environmental
Protection (FDEP) is the lead
agency for responding to the
oil spill and has implemented
plans for cleanup and disposal
of oil waste and air and water
monitoring. In addition to
FDEP the Florida Fish and

booms and other barriers to
attempt to keep oil from
reaching sensitive bays,
marshes, wetlands and
coastal dune lakes. They
also provided outlets for the
dissemination of information
from other state and federal
agencies. In both Walton
and Bay Counties outlets
from coastal dune lakes
(see Vol 42 of the Florida
LAKEWATCH Newsletter for
information on Florida's
coastal dune lakes) were
manually closed in an
attempt to keep oil out of
these unique waterbodies.
The outlet on Lake Powell,
Florida's largest coastal
dune lake, which is located
in both Bay and Walton
Counties, was filled with
about 4,500 cubic yards of
beach compatible sand to
prevent any oil from
reaching the lake.

BP staging area, downtown Panama City, Florida.


Now that oil is no longer
escaping from the well, the
response has transitioned from
one of emergency operations
to one of monitoring. On
August 27th, the State
Emergency Operations Center
transitioned to a monitoring
status for the Deepwater
Horizon Event. State
emergency response officials
will continue to respond to
impacts as they are reported
to the State Watch Office and
ensure proper cleanup occurs
as needed.

As part of this transition, the
Florida Oil Spill Information
Line was deactivated on
August 27. Callers seeking
state information regarding the
oil spill should view the
Deepwater Horizon website at
www.deepwaterhorizonflorida .
com or call the BP Community
Information Line at 1-866-448-
5816 or the Gulf Coast Claim
Facility at 1-800-916-4893.
It is likely that beaches in
Northwest Florida will continue
to receive impacts, mainly
scattered tar balls in the
coming months caused by
natural tides and weather
conditions. According to BP
daily reports to Escambia
County, thousands of pounds
of weathered oil were still
being removed from Pensacola
Bay in late August. Now that
peak hurricane season is here
it is possible that immediately
following tropical activity,
lingering ocean swells and

Cleanup vessels out of Saint Andrews Bay working on the Gulf oil spill.

higher tides could push
offshore tar ball fields closer to
the coast. So as you can see,
Florida will be dealing with the

aftermath of the gulf oil spill
for some time to come but we
are all hopeful that the worst
is behind us.

r II

rrotective Dooml storea at trie ariallia uty IViarTina, reauy to De
deployed to prevent oil from entering the Saint Andrews Bay.

This story was compiled from reports from FDEP, FWC, the
Panama City News Herald and pnj.com.

A New Prospective on Phosphorus


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whether phosphorus limitation could
operate at the level of human
society--that it could constrain our
food production or cause societal
problems, famine, food security,
national security issues."
Now most of us have thought about
how phosphorus could affect our
lawns and lakes, but very few of us
have considered phosphorus when
thinking about national security

How could phosphorus be related to
National Security? Well according
to Elser, phosphorus has the potential
to limit society because the vast
majority of phosphorus is mined and
most of it is used in intensive
farming practices to fertilize crops.

Lake Mary 3ane in Orange County

A limiting nutrient is a chemical
necessary for plant growth-but
available in smaller quantities
than needed for algae to increase
their abundance. Once the limiting
nutrient in a waterbody is
exhausted, algae stop growing. If
more of the limiting nutrient is
added, larger algal populations
will result until their growth is
again limited by nutrients or other
environmental factors.

In Florida waterbodies,
phosphorus is most often the
limiting nutrient, except in
watershed where soils contain
sizable deposits of phosphorus. In
these watersheds, nitrogen is
usually the limiting nutrient.

While many scientists at Agencies
and Universities across Florida and
the nation look at ways to limit the
amount of phosphorus entering our
waterbodies, scientists at Arizona
State University (ASU) are looking
at phosphorus limitation on a much
broader scale.

Dr. James Elser, an ecologist at
ASU, has been studying the concept
of phosphorus scarcity. "For the last
25 years, I've been working on
phosphorus limitation of everything:
bacteria, daphnia (a micro-crustacean
found in freshwater lakes),
phytoplankton (a microscopic free-
floating algae), plants, cancer,
evolution-everything. But, I was
surprised I had never thought about

Where is this phosphorus mined?
About 90 % of the geological supply
of phosphorus occurs in Morocco
and the Western Sahara, China,
South Africa, Jordan and the United
States. The United States is currently
producing the most phosphate in the
world, while Morocco and China
rank second and third respectively.
Florida provides 75% of the nations
supply of phosphorus 25% of the
world supply. The problem is that
90% of the world supply of
phosphorus is controlled by five
countries. Compare that to the
petroleum industry where 12
countries control about 75% of the
worlds oil supply.

Although the United States is
currently producing more phosphate
rock than Morocco and phosphorus
currently seems plentiful, Morocco's
phosphate reserves are estimated to
be nearly six times that of the United
States. "Morocco is poised to be the
Saudi Arabia of phosphorus,"
commented Elser.

Elser and several of his colleagues
are concerned about the small
number of mines and the uncertain
and limited number of reserves and
how that could affect rising prices or
even worse, food riots and famine in
the future.

According to Elser, scientists should
look at the worldwide picture of
phosphorus distribution. "We can
sequence entire genomes of species,
but no one can really say how much
economically extractable phosphorus
reserves exist. That's not very

So how much phosphorous is left?
According to the Florida Institute of
Phosphate Research (FIPR), it is
hard to tell. In the Phosphate Primer
FIPR says, "For decades, it has been
said that the phosphate in Florida
could be mined for about another 25
years. Technological advances and

If phosphorus 25% of the world

business expert, and Daniel
Chambers, a phosphorus biochemist,
worried. "Mark said that he couldn't
sleep for three weeks after he made
the connection," Elser related. The
three have teamed up to create
societal change by launching the
Sustainable Phosphorus Initiative.
This initiative strives to build
collaborations with farmers,
educators, engineers, designers and
civic leaders on green agriculture,
wastewater reclamation, and long-
term sustainability.

"We need to be asking how we can
achieve sustainable phosphorus by
closing the phosphorus cycle in
human and agricultural waste
streams. Our hope for this launch is
that we can, and our students can, not
only help better define the problems,
but turn an idea into creative solution
building with the community," said

Florida provides 75% of the nations supply o

market changes, however, have
continually lengthened the expected
life of phosphate mining, allowing
mining of rock that wouldn't have
been mined in previous years."

FIPR also claims that based on the
current mining rate, Florida's 10
billion tons of soluble phosphate
would last for more than 300 years if
economic and technological
conditions allow. Technological
advances can change these estimates
producing a more efficient fertilizer
that could deliver nutrients only to
plants when they need them. These
"efficient fertilizers" would provide
the added benefit of reduced
nutrients in runoff to surface and
ground waters.

While technological advances can
extend longevity of mining reserves
the fact that most of the worlds
reserves are found in Eive countries
has Elser and two other scientist
from ASU, Mark Edwards, an agro

The information from this article comes from the National
Science Foundation-Discoveries article "On Earth Day and
Everyday, Ecologist Fights for Phosphorus" and the Florida
Institute of Phosphate Research's "Phosphate Primer."

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FLMS has created a cost-share program that funds lake, pond and shoreline projects demonstrating
management techniques that help protect, preserve and restore Florida's aquatic resources. Each year
FLMS solicits grant proposals describing successful management projects. FLMS will provide matching
funds for expenses incurred by the selected applicant. Expenditures may be in the form of labor or
monetary contributions utilized in the program. Proposals are reviewed by a selection committee
based on the following criteria:

Monetary or labor match programs encouraging community involvement are strongly

Location project must be accessible to the public (may include large communities or
neighborhoods dependent on accessibility).

Signage educational component explaining project.

Water quality enhancements examples include Florida-friendly landscaping, environmental
berm and swale, and other innovative erosion control techniques.

Please contact Sherry Brandt-Williams if you have any further questions.

"Love Your Lake" project proposals must be submitted by March 1, 2011. Projects must be completed
by December 1, 2011.

The Florida Lake Management Society's

Love Your Lake Program

The Florida Lake Management Society's

Shoreline Grants Program

The Florida Lake Management Society (FLMS) sponsors an annual Shoreline Development Funding Program. FLMS will
provide specific grants through local sponsors such as governments and environmental organizations to distribute to
shoreline homeowners for enhancement projects that combine a beneficial, native, aquatic plant habitat with some simple
stormwater treatment techniques. Each homeowner may receive up to $200 for projects approved by the local sponsor
and FLMS.

Grant Selection Process:
Each homeowner must submit an application that includes:

*Name, address, and contact number or email address
*Pictures of the shoreline before any work is done. (if available)
Explanation on one sheet of paper of the proposed improvements to the shoreline area and why this will be
beneficial to the surrounding environment. Upon completion of the project each homeowner or local entity must
*A brief description of the completed projected
*Receipts for any purchases
Not sure where to start?
The FLMS Shoreline Funding Program is administered by a local entity. The sponsoring agency can help you decide which
aquatic plants are beneficial to the environment, what permits may be needed and who to contact, and how to construct
simple stormwater treatment areas, such as a berm and swale system.

Please contact Sherry Brandt-Williams for further questions.
Send individual proposals to: FLMS PO Box 950701 Lake Mary, FL 32795-0701

Conservation Education and the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill
By Bob Wattendorf of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Summer provides ample
opportunity for children to
learn to love nature. Every
time they get outdoors and
connect a little more with
nature, it helps them develop
healthier, happier and smarter
lifestyles and appreciation for
conservation. Whether they
visit a fishing pond, climb a
tree, help in the garden, go
swimming or tubing, or
explore a park or wooded lot, it
gets them outside to participate
in active pursuits.

When Richard Louv published
"Last Child in the Woods--
Saving Our Children from
Nature-Deficit Disorder" in
2005, it spurred a global
movement led by the Children
and Nature Network to
accomplish just that. "In
Florida, Get Outdoors
Florida!" is both the initiative
and coalition, with the goal of
helping parents and families
find fun ways to lead healthier
more natural lifestyles and to
better appreciate our resources.
Visit GetOutdoorsFlorida.org
for places to go and tips on fun
activities. You can also leam
more about the benefits or how
to make a contribution.

Throughout the summer the
Florida Fish and Wildlife
Conservation Commission
(FWC), a major proponent of
the "Get Outdoors Florida!"
movement, conducted
numerous camps and events to
help create the next generation
who cares. From Joe Budd
Aquatic Education Center and

exercise goes hand and hand.

Center Network
(MyFWC. com/youth).
As education writer and
philosopher David Sobel says,
we must "give children a chat ce
to love the earth before we ask
them to save it." Ever since the
oil-drilling platform, Deepwater
Horizon, exploded in the Gulf
of Mexico on April 20, setting
off one of the largest ecological
disasters in American history,
Florldians have been
reconsidering how critical a
conservation ethic is to our
quality of life.
It is important that parents be
able to communicate with their
children at an appropriate age

Connecting with nature and getting

the Beau Tumner Youth
Conservation Center, both near
Tallahassee, to the Ocala
Outdoor Adventure Camp'
Tenoroc Fish Management
Area and Chinesgut Nature
Center all the way down to the
Everglades Youth
Conservation Camp, thousands
of kids experienced the joys of
being outdoors, burned
calories, expanded their
imaginations, developed
recreational skills and learned
to appreciate nature. The
FWC is working to tie these
programs together and make
major capital improvements at
these facilities by creating a
Florida Youth Conservation

fishing/hunting programs when
you make your purchase
(MyFWC.com/License) All of
your license fees go to
conservation and donations go
specifically to youth fishing and
hunting programs in Florida.
FWC Chairman, Rodney
Barreto in an open letter
regarding the crisis said:
"We continue to fght for the
welfare of Florida 's precious
wildlife that cannot speak, but
we can speak. We are their
voice, and we say loud and
clear, 'BP, open your purse
strings and save our psh and
wildlife so our grandchildren
and great grandchildren will
not have to learn about our wild
animals fr-om textbooks and
museums because they became
the dinosaurs of the 21st
centurT .

Jo0e Budd Aquatic Education Center provides camps that encourage
youth for the long-term in nature-based recreation.

level about catastrophes of all
types as well as the importance
of nurturing nature. Ranger
provides some excellent tips.
The FWC continues to work
diligently with the Florida
Department of Environmental
Protection, county
governments, water
management districts and
several federal agencies, to
conduct wildlife assessments
and to protect Florida's
wildlife populations
throughout this crisis. This
includes taking water samples
and testing for contaminants in
sediments, fish and shellfish,
and evaluating critical habitat,
shorebird and sea turtle nesting

Gov. Charlie Crist requested
and received a determination
from the U.S. Department of
Commerce that some of
Florida's vital fisheries have
failed. This allows fishermen
and affected businesses to

qualify for economic injury
loans. Meanwhile, the
National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration's
Fisheries Service has enacted
emergency regulations to close
a portion of the Gulf
of Mexico exclusive
economic zone to all
fishing, and the FWC
has issued local
fisheries advisories.
Since these are subject
to change, please see
for updates.

In spite of all this,
Florida remains the
Fishing Capital of the
World, with most of
our saltwater fisheries
and all of our
freshwater fisheries
still providing diverse
-year-round nature-
based recreation to
Floridians and tourists.
Help keep it that way
by taking a kid fishing,
buying a license and Nicl
contributing to youth assl

k( Wiley, Executive Director of the FWC,
ists with the sea turtle nest relocation to
p them ovoid the oil spill.

Now is the time to take extreme
measures to save our precious
resources. Fish and wildlife are
critical to Florida's survival.
Without the benefits they bring to
our everyday lives, Florida would
not be the special place it is
The FWC is working aggressively
to protect and restore fish and
wildlife species and their habitats
and to reconnect children with
nature, since the ultimate solution
to such ecological crises will be in
their hands. Floridians should
care about and be able to enjoy
our natural resources in ways that
our forebears did to preserve not
only our sporting heritage, but
also Florida's diverse natural
wildlife and the aesthetics that
drive the real estate economy,
tourism and our sense of being.

Education and opportunity is the

key. When children or adults
get outdoors more frequently
they achieve healthier, happier
and smarter lifestyles (see
childrenandnature.org for
details) and understand how
fragile and interconnected our
environment is.

Healthier: The Let's Move
Outside website suggests
"Kids need at least 60 minutes
of active and vigorous play
each day, and one of the
easiest and most enjoyable
ways to meet this goal is by
playing outside." Having fun
doesn't seem like a steep price
to pay for being healthier,
reducing weight problems and
preventing associated diseases
such as diabetes, heart
problems, attention deficit
disorder, asthma and more.
Happier: I won't bother going
to the research for this one;

just watch any child's smile as
they catch their first fish, chase
a lightening bug or climb up to
a new tree limb.

Smarter: Dr. Kellert, Yale
University, found that "Play in
nature, particularly during the
critical period of middle
childhood, appears to be an
especially important time for
developing the capacities for
creativity, problem-solving,
and emotional and intellectual
development. Andrea Faber
Taylor's research at the
University of Illinois suggests
the brain uses two forms of
attention: "directed" attention
for concentrated thinking, and
"involuntary" attention, when
we're distracted by things like
a beautiful sunset or watching
a turtle slip into the water from
a fallen log. Directed attention
is limited so hours in front of a
computer or playing video
games leave us fatigued.
Whereas time spent in natural
settings activates involuntary
attention, giving the brain time
to rest, resulting in enhanced
performance at school and

The President's "America's
Great Outdoors Initiative"
(www.DOI.gov) and First
Lady Michelle Obama's "Let's
Move Outside" program
(www.LetsMove.gov) are
national efforts that contribute
to preserving and enjoying our
natural heritage, combating
obesity and creating a brighter
future for our children.
Together we can keep Florida
a beautiful place for children,
fish and wildlife to grow
together as nature always

Fishing is one of the key gateways to other forms of
recreation. Who doesn't remember their first fish, the
excitement and curiosity that engenders.


months). During this time, all
of the property on the lake has
been developed into residential
lots with many permanent
residents living there.
Fortunately, the
LAKEWATCH data has
shown that this development
has not caused the lake's water

and Margaret with many
hours of enjoyment. Their
three children grew up on this
lake learning how to swim,
fish and water ski. Their
children are married now, live
out of state, and have children
of their own. When they can,
the children and grandchildren
spend time on the lake,
and the grandchildren
are learning to swim,
spending great times
together. Leon and
Margaret are thrilled
to pass this enjoyment
on to their children
and their families, and
so, the cycle of life
continues .
...... When not enjoying
Time on the lake, Leon
I Couch's field of
interest is in
systems, with
expertise in
modulation theory and
applications to
systems. At one time
or another, he taught
each of the different
undergraduate and
y for 20 communication
courses in the UF
Electrical and Computer
Engineering Department. He
taught thousands of
undergraduate students, and
supervised the work of about

Leon Couch, a native of North
Carolina, came to Florida in
1963 to attend graduate school
at the University of Florida. In
1968 he obtained a Ph.D. in
electrical engineering and
remained at UF, eventually
becoming a professor. After
teaching and conducting
research at UF for 26
years, he retired in

Leon and his wife,
Margaret, were
fortunate to acquire
property on Lake
Higginbotham in
southwestern Putnam
County in 1974. Lake
Higginbotham is an
oligotrophic (clearer
water with low
nutrients and algae)
located in the Trail
Ridge lake region. The
region is dominated by
well-drained, nutrient-
poor soils with mostly
small, acid, clear
lakes, with some
slightly colored lakes.
Average lake
phosphorus values are
mostly less than 10
u/L. Leon
In 1990 Leon heard about the
LAKEWATCH program and
joined as a volunteer in March
of that year. He has now
sampled Lake Higginbotham
for 20 years (over 243

Couch has now sampled Lake Higginbotham in Putnam Count!
(over 243 months).
quality to deteriorate. The
average values for each year
have remained nearly the same
over this 20-year period.

The lake has provided Leon

Outstanding LAKEWA TCH Volunteer

'Flori 1

This newsletter Is generated by the Florida
LAKEWATCH program, withm UF/IFAS Support
for the LAKEWATCH program Is provided by the
Florida Legislature, grants and donations For more
mformation about LAKEWATCH, to mquire about
volunteer trammg sessions, or to submit materials for
melusion m this publication, write to
Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
School of Forest Resources and Conservation
E-mail fl-lakewatch~ufl edu
http //lakewatch Ifas ufl edu/

All unsohicited articles, photographs, artwork or other
written material must melude contributor's name,
address and phone number Opmlons expressed are
solely those of the mdividual contributor and do not
necessarily reflect the opmlon or policy of the Florida

90 master's students, and five
Ph.D. students.

Dr. Couch has published about
30 papers and many editions of
textbooks. In particular, the
fifSt edition of Digital and
Analog Communication
Systems was published in
1983, and the seventh edition
Of this book was published in
English with a copyright date
Of 2007, in Italian and Spanish
with copyright dates of 2008 '
and the Indian Edition in
English with a copyright date
of 2009. Since its inception,
the book has been adopted by
hundreds of schools worldwide
and is available from
Pearson/Prentice Hall in
English, Indian, Spanish,

Italian, and Chinese editions.

Leon is a dedicated volunteer
to the LAKEWATCH program
who has never missed a sample
in 20 years of service and it
has been a pleasure having
Leon as a member of the
prOgram. We rarely come
across volunteers like Leon
whose dedication and service
to his lake and those around
him goes beyond anything we
eXpected from a volunteer
when the program was created.
All of us at LAKEWATCH
want to give Leon a big,




Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
School of Forestry Resource Conservation
7922 NW 71st Street
Gainesville, FL 32653

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