Preservation of Native Plants and Their Habitats

Preservation Is Our Ideal!

Where well managed ecosystems harbouring rare, endemic, or keystone species exist, we strive to protect them.

FNPS supports state and local acquisition of conservation lands. We operate at both the state and local level to support public acquisition and appropriate management of lands that protect intact ecosystems, native flora, and wildlife. At the state level, FNPS was a participant in the renewal of the Florida Forever Program, and has supported the ongoing funding of land acquisition programs

Based on information provided by the FDEP (Florida Department of Environmental Protection), Florida Forever has protected more than 652,000 acres.  This is a huge number of acres and worth of praise to the legislators and agency staff who have made it happen.  Local governments own and manage about 600,000 acres  (data from the Florida Natural Areas Inventory, 2019)

However, much more remains to be done. 

  • Both state and locally owned conservation lands need money for management
  • We need to fill in gaps in core wildlife areas.
  • We need to protect areas supporting populations of rare plants.
  • We need movement corridors, corridors of suitable habitat for their target species.  We need theses corridors not only for keystone wildlife species (such as gopher tortoises), but also for pollinators, birds, mice, snakes, lizzards, and plants.
  • We need corridors and other linear conservation ownership for recreation (trails, bike paths, etc.)

We need to acquire coastal natural areas needed for protection against hurricanes and to be robust as sea levels rise due to changing world climate.

For these reasons and more, FNPS continues to support full funding for the Florida Forever Programs including funds for further acquisitions and management.

Conservation lands, Florida Natural Areas Inventory, December 23, 2019. State lands are green, federal and local lands are brown.

FNPS is now a landowner.
 

Working with generous grant providers, FNPS has acquired land that supports the endangered plant Warea amplexifolia (clasping warea) and will be managing it for the benefit of this rare species found only in Florida

See more.

Warea amplexifola. Photo by Shirley Denton

Florida’s nearly 10 million acres of conservation lands require active stewardship to maintain them as viable ecosystems and as places for people to use for educational and recreational purposes. As part of this process, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) conducts periodic reviews…

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FNPS volunteers monitoring the only protected population of the rare, endemic plant Dicerandra modesta (Blushing scrub balm).  FNPS is also assisting land managers with restoration work at the property.

The longleaf pine ecosystem once encompassed 90 million acres and spread from Texas to the Carolinas.  Despite being reduced to fewer than 3 million acres, the remaining lands still contain some of the most diverse plant and animal communities in the world.  The Florida Native Plant Society is working with conservation partners and concerned citizens to preserve and restore the remaining pieces of this landscape.

Thanks to the success of our Citizen Science Project to Map Rare Plant Species, we were able to share GIS data with our conservation partner, Putnam Land Conservancy (PLC).  Working together and engaging the assistance of scientists, students and concerned citizens, we have identified an undeveloped area of sandhill that if protected, will preserve important wildlife habitat and a natural corridor between publically-protected conservation lands.  The project area is home to numerous rare plant and animal species including clasping warea (Warea amplexifolia), a critically endangered plant species, the Florida sand skink (Plestiodon reynoldsi), Florida black bear (Ursus americanus floridanus), gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus), and Sherman’s Fox Squirrel (Sciurus niger shermani).

Please join us in thanking our partner Putnam Land Conservancy for all the great work they are doing!

 

Jim Buchner at Putnam Land Conservancy site.