Upland Habitat Projects
In addition to providing research and scientific counsel, Upland Habitat is responsible for essential ecosystem restoration and management projects. Projects include the Native Ground Cover Restoration Program, the Objectives-Based Vegetation Management Program, a Cabbage Palm control study, a Sanibel Island Rice Rat Project, a Flatwoods Salamander study and a Scrub Ecosystem Management study.
The OBVM program provides data that is essential to best manage, protect and restore ecological structure on FWC lands.
Upland Habitat scientists are currently studying control methods of Cabbage Palm (Sabal Palmetto) on Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area. Comparisons of recent and historical aerial photographs show numerous mesic flatwood sites in Florida have been invaded by cabbage palms over the last 6 decades.
In order to enhance wildlife habitat and ecosystem functions, the GCR program works to restore degraded habitat, pasture, and agricultural lands to native ground cover.
Upland Habitat scientists are currently involved in a study to determine habitat selection for the Sanibel Island rice rat (Oryzomys palustris sanibeli). Data collected will be used to inform restoration efforts and habitat mangement decisions.
Upland Habitat scientists evaluate vegetation management methods to determine the techniques that best maintain and restore flatwoods ecosystems. Land management strategies under evaluation include chop and burn, herbicide and burn, and burn-only.
Absence of fire on some FWC lands has resulted in so much vegetation overgrowth that using prescribed fire is not safe or practical. To restore and maintain pyrogenic ecosystems, Upland Habitat scientists study mechanical treatments on scrub communities.
Around the state, researchers are working to restore historic
native flatwoods communities.
View photos from upland habitat restoration projects around the state.