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Monday, September 29, 2008

Septic Springs: Study points to need for more regulation

Published September 29, 2008 - (Opinion) Tallahassee Democrat
How much each source of pollution is responsible is educated guesswork based on various studies performed over the years. But another recent study adds weight to the body of evidence indicating that Woodville-area septic-tank pollution is not a friend of Wakulla Springs.
Source

Researchers study water pollutants

Published 9/29/08 - Central Florida Future
In the partnership with Marion County, researchers study the retention ponds and how pollutants such as nitrates seep into the ground. They also study possible solutions such as adding different materials to the retention ponds to help filter nitrates.

She said the main problem in Marion County is the two major freshwater springs in the area: Rainbow Springs and Silver Glen Springs. If nitrates pollute the water that feeds the springs, it could lead to a change in the ecology of the river, Mowry said. That mean's it would no longer be a good swimming or fishing spot, Mowry said.
Source

Boat restrictions eased by officials

Published September 28, 2008 - news-journalonline.com
State wildlife officials continue to ease the emergency boating restrictions on the St. Johns River.

Lake Jesup no longer has any vessel restrictions, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announced Saturday. Since August, the river had been closed to vessels from the south end of Lake Monroe, south to State Road 50, because of flood waters from Tropical Storm Fay.
Source

Dr. Robert L. Knight: Saving Silver Springs can’t wait forever

Published September 28, 2008 - Gainesville Sun
I also found that the fish community at Silver Springs had declined by 78 percent during the intervening 25 years, and the changes were linked in time to the construction of Rodman Reservoir downstream on the Ocklawaha River.

The recent Silver Springs study also forecasted the condition of Silver Springs 50 years in the future (2055) as a result of continuing development in Marion County. These estimates predict an additional 84 percent increase of nitrate concentrations, an 18 percent additional decrease in flows, and further degradation of the biological community in Silver Springs.
Source

Sunday, September 28, 2008

State taking ownership of Weeki Wachee Springs

Published September 27, 2008 - Bay News 9
The Recreation and Parks Department of the Florida Department of Enviornmental Protection is taking over Weeki Wachee Springs and Buccaneer Bay in November.

Weeki Wachee officials say the state has reassured them that no changes will be made.
Source

Fate of proposed bottled water plant near High Springs to be considered

Published 9/27/08 - High Springs Herald
A final decision on whether a bottled water plant will be allowed to be built on the Santa Fe River near High Springs will be made at a meeting Tuesday, Sept. 30.

A special Gilchrist County Commission meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. at the Trenton High School Auditorium to discuss a special permit that would allow a bottled water plant to pump 500,000 gallons of water a day from a spring system called Blue Springs near Rum Island.
Source

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Suwannee River Water Management District governing board

Published September 27, 2008 - Orange Sentinel
The 2008 Water Congress was held in a collegial setting. In contrast, the trial-like state administrative hearing in Sanford promises to lay bare simmering resentment between North and Central Florida over the use of the St. Johns River.

Hoping to avoid future battles, the several hundred top water professionals brainstorming in Orlando on Friday shared ideas for solving water challenges in the coming decades. The gathering focused on drafting for state lawmakers a series of recommendations on water use, now running at about 20 billion gallons daily statewide.
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Florida once again wonders: Whose water is it?

Published September 26, 2008 - Tallahassee Democrat (Opinion)
Backin 2003, when Jim King was president of the Florida Senate, he hit a rhetorical home run when describing the depth of outrage among North Floridians over the suggestion that the historic Suwannee River could be the answer to water shortages downstate.

When South Florida politicians and developers start scheming about taking North Florida's water, people hereabouts start looking in the direction of their gun cabinets. Water's about as primal a public policy issue as there is. When they talk about taking what residents of this region perceive as theirs, prepare to take cover.
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SRWMD Governing Board approves FY 2008-09 budget, work plan

Published 09/26/2008 - North Florida News Daily
The Suwannee River Water Management District governing board This year’s budget highlights several programs of interest to the District including:

Implementation of The Ichetucknee Partnership (TIP) involving local, voluntary and incentive based initiatives to support wise springshed management within the Ichetucknee Springshed.
Source

Conservation is Best Way to Help Protect the River

Published 26 September 2008 - redOrbit.com
First, the district is in the process of conducting a two-year scientific study of what the environmental effects of withdrawing water from the river would be.

Beginning to withdraw water before knowing that impact would be ridiculous.

Second, delay is important because the focus of the debate is beginning to shift more toward where it should have been all along - - conservation
Source

Study links septic tanks to algae and weeds in Wakulla Springs

Published September 26, 2008 - Tallahassee Democrat
A recent study has connected septic tanks in the Woodville area to groundwater flowing out at Wakulla Springs, according to a Florida State University researcher.

Earlier this year, researchers injected the tracer chemical sulfur hexafluoride into groundwater at other locations in Woodville and detected it 60 days later at Wakulla Springs, Chanton said. Together, the two tests confirmed the connection between septic tanks in the Woodville area and the springs.
Source

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Celebrate National Lands Day with Wakulla Springs State Park

Published 9/24/08 - Wakulla.com
In honor of both National Public Lands Day and National Estuaries Day on September 27, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is encouraging Floridians and visitors to participate in educational activities statewide that will highlight the annual celebrations.  There are events taking place at state parks as well as the DEP-managed greenways and trails statewide, while events being held at Florida’s three National Estuarine Research Reserves, managed by the Florida DEP, will hold events exploring estuary habitats and wildlife. There will be several events where volunteers and families can participate in restoration and land management projects.

Wakulla Springs State Park will celebrate National Public Lands Day on Saturday, September 27, 2008.  Volunteers will join staff in repairing portions of the nature trails to improve visitor access.  Work clothes and shoes are required.  Work gloves and a water bottle are suggested.  Lunch will be provided to all participants.  The event will take place from 
9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Wakulla Springs State Park, 550 Wakulla Park Drive, Wakulla Springs, Florida.  Call (850) 926-0700 for more information about the event.  Visit www.floridastateparks.org/WAKULLASPRINGS/ to learn more about Wakulla Springs State Park.
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Plan for a Florida water czar resurfaces at conference

Published September 24, 2008 - St. Petersburg Times
The two-day gathering of more than 100 utility officials, developers, bureaucrats, lobbyists, lawyers and environmental activists has been organized by the Century Commission on a Sustainable Florida, led by St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Baker.

At the meetings of the Florida Water Congress on Thursday and Friday, the agenda calls for discussing topics, including conservation, desalination and whether the state needs a water czar with the power to order drinking supplies piped from the regions that have it to the regions where developers need it.
Source

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Where Did Our Water Go? Give the law a chance

Published September 23, 2008 - Orange Sentinel
Florida sits atop one of the most productive aquifers in the world -- the Floridan Aquifer, which extends for about 100,000 square miles beneath Florida and neighboring states. Altogether, it is estimated that more than a quadrillion gallons of fresh groundwater percolates below Florida -- more than beneath any other state. But utilities in Central Florida are running short of available groundwater. How can that be?

The primary causes of our water woes can be stated simply: over-consumption, over-drainage and unsustainable growth.
Source

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Corps Of Engineers Plans Meetings On River Basin

Published September 22, 2008 - Tampa Bay Tribune Online
Five public meetings are planned next month by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on its operations of the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River basin.

The agency's water control manuals spell out how its reservoirs should be managed including how much water is released.
Source

Monday, September 22, 2008

Leon County residents point to development as reason behind recent flooding

Published September 21, 2008 - Tallahassee Democrat
Over a two-day period starting Aug. 2, Fay dumped 74 billion gallons of rainwater on Leon County — 26 billion within Tallahassee city limits — damaging hundreds of homes, causing millions of dollars in damage and flooding dozens of residents out of their homes.

In closed basins, floodwaters can remain a problem for several days because the water slowly leaves the area only through percolation into the groundwater and by being pulled out by trees and plants. The Oak Ridge Road area also had two sinkholes, but those were overwhelmed by the sheer amount of flooding.
Source

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Cave diver dies at Jackson Blue

Published: September 20, 2008 - Jackson County Floridian
A Texas man died while diving at Blue Springs Recreational Area near Marianna on Friday, said authorities.

Mork and his friend Dan Weyant, both from Texas, both entered the water at Blue Spring at 12:30 p.m. and descended about 2,000 feet through the cave known as Jackson Blue into an area of the cave known as Rabbit Hole, according to JCSO.
Source

Recovery from flooding slow for many along the St. Johns

Published September 20, 2008 - Orlando Sentinel
It will be a long time before life along the St. Johns River returns to normal.

"We're still flooded," Seminole County Emergency Manager Alan Harris said this week, more than four weeks after Tropical Storm Fay dumped more than 27 inches of rain on some areas of Central Florida. "It could be weeks before we're out of flood stage," he said.
Source

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Water withdrawal request sparks massive study of St. Johns River

Published September 19, 2008 - Daytona Beach News-Journal Online
"We're putting together a clearer picture of the St. Johns River than has ever existed before," said Ed Lowe, the district's director of environmental scientists and lead scientist for the assessment. An interim report is expected later this fall, but the panel's final report won't be complete for two years.
Source

Consensus inches toward tapping two nearby rivers

Published September 19, 2008 - The Gainesville Sun
The St. Johns and Ocklawaha rivers moved a little closer last week to becoming prime potable water sources for thirsty Central Florida.

More than 100 scientists, St. Johns River Water Management District engineers and environmental experts met in Gainesville on Wednesday and Thursday to discuss the rivers as two potential water sources in 2013, when the state turns off the taps to Central Florida countries seeking to draw additional groundwater from the aquifer.
Source

Springs festival promotes water resources

Published September 19, 2008 - Star-Banner
To ensure residents understand the county's water resources, environmental agencies, as well as state and local governments, will hold their seventh annual Marion County Springs Festival Saturday at Silver River State Park.

Knight has studied the spring and Silver River for the past 25 years, watching nitrate levels increase several fold as nutrients leach into groundwater from septic tanks and sewer plants.
Source

Students show love, concern for the springs

Published September 19, 2008 - Star-Banner
As members of a group called PAWS (Promoting Awesome Watershed Stewardship), she helped students monitor the water quality at four sites on the Rainbow and Withlacoochee Rivers.

Regrettably, there is a lot of misinformation about our water resources and a lot of controversy that surrounds them. The first step toward a solution is increasing appreciation for our springs and other water resources.
Source

Friday, September 19, 2008

Boating restrictions on St. Johns River adjusted

Published September 18, 2008 - West Volusia News
As floodwaters along the St. Johns River slowly recede, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has eased boating restrictions from the Highlands Park Canal just north of State Road 44 south to the Interstate 4 bridge at Lake Monroe.
Source

Scientists ask just how much can the St. Johns lose

Published 9/18/2008 - The Florida Times-Union
Taking too much water from the St. Johns River could fuel toxic algae blooms and suck water from underground aquifers, scientists meeting Wednesday said.

During Wednesday's public meeting, attended by about 100 people, researchers described computer models of subjects including how salt content in the river might change. That projection suggested other factors, including dredging to accommodate larger ships in Jacksonville's port, could have a larger impact on how much ocean water enters the river.
Source

State to purchase sensitive land site

Published September 18, 2008 - Tallahassee Democrat
More than 1,000 acres along the St. Marks River in Leon County will be protected from development under a purchase approved Tuesday by the governor and Cabinet.

The area is north of Apalachee Parkway and features pine woods, river swamp and a stream that flows underground into Wood Sink. Tallahassee and Leon County earlier had targeted the area for purchase under the Blueprint 2000 program to protect water quality.
Source

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Sod industry: Grass isn't the enemy

Not exactly about the Florida Springs but I sometimes see this issue about
St. Augustine grass showing up in regards to water conservation.

Published September 17, 2008 - Daily Commercial
Irrigation controls, water-saving technologies and education would be more effective than banning a grass that can sometimes be more resilient than other drought-resistant varieties, those industry leaders argued during a Tuesday county commission workshop.

Simply banning a grass instead of encouraging methods for water conservation doesn't get commissioners to the ultimate goal of saving water, said David Dymond, board member with the Florida Sod Growers Cooperative and general manager of a sod growing business.
Source

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Cutting Back Algae In St. Johns River

Published September 16, 2008 - WOKV News
A Florida Department of Environmental Protection committee has endorsed a plan to keep algae from building up in the St. Johns River.

The DEP's Total Maximum Daily Load Executive Committee has endorsed the Lower St. Johns River Basin Management Action Plan, a roadmap to reduce the amount of nutrients that are loaded into the river that can cause the unsightly and potentially environmentally harmful algal blooms.
Source

Group seeks to reconnect communities along Apalachicola River

Published September 16, 2008 - Tallahassee Democrat
They’re supporting the concept behind a group called RiverWay South, based in Columbus, Ga. at Columbus State University. The group says its mission is to promote the Apalachicola, Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers for tourism and to preserve the heritage of communities.
Source Google Cache

Monday, September 15, 2008

Annie Pais: How can we protect our water in Florida?

Published September 14, 2008 - The Gainesville Sun (Opinion)
In 2006 Florida’s Eden, a north Florida nonprofit, citizen initiative researched the water challenges. Puzzled by the lack of protection for the aquifer and the springs, Florida’s Eden questioned scientists and community leaders to come up with a plan to bridge the gap between what we know needs to be done and making it happen.

To find out more about One Region One Book, the Water Awareness Campaign and how your participation is important please visit http://www.FloridasEden.org or call Annie Pais at 352-377-0777.
Source

Ocklawaha River still potential target for water grab

Published September 14, 2008 - Star-Banner
The St. Johns Water Management District will hold a symposium Wednesday and Thursday to discuss potential effects of withdrawing water from the St. Johns and lower Ocklawaha rivers. Attending the meetings will be water agency scientists and environmental experts outside the agency who were asked by the district to review its work and findings.

The meeting, being held in Gainesville, will focus on the water agency’s initial findings on the issue of water withdrawal from the two rivers. Largin said the Management District will hold more meetings in the future as additional information about water withdrawal becomes available.
Source

Ocklawaha River still potential target for water grab

Published September 14, 2008 - Star-Banner
The St. Johns Water Management District will hold a symposium Wednesday and Thursday to discuss potential effects of withdrawing water from the St. Johns and lower Ocklawaha rivers. Attending the meetings will be water agency scientists and environmental experts outside the agency who were asked by the district to review its work and findings.

The meeting, being held in Gainesville, will focus on the water agency’s initial findings on the issue of water withdrawal from the two rivers. Largin said the Management District will hold more meetings in the future as additional information about water withdrawal becomes available.
Source

Volusia's Spring-to-Spring Trail, middle section

Posted Sep 13, 2008
This is a fairly new, 3.3-mile segment plus a 2-mile loop at Lake Beresford Park. So out and back and around the loop is a nice 8.6-mile ride. I advise using the free parking at Lake Beresford Park because the southern end is at Blue Spring State Park, and that costs to park/
Source

Springs protection? Never mind

Published September 13, 2008 - Star-Banner (Opinion)
During a board workshop Tuesday on the proposed Springs Protection Ordinance, Stone rejected the idea that commissioners should act to preserve the quantity and quality of our water supply.
Source

State Park Expands Holiday Events

Published September 13, 2008 - Tampa Bay Online
New holiday events aimed at luring more visitors to Werner Boyce Salt Springs State Park are in the works.

Late-night events will offer spooky fun during Halloween in the Woods in October, organized by the Salt Springs Alliance park booster group.

In December, the first Holiday Nights Under the Stars will provide gift-shopping while visitors stroll a trail decorated with lights.
Source

Men accused of dumping asbestos tiles in swamp

Published September 13, 2008 - Herald Tribune
Three men were arrested Friday in the dumping of asbestos tiles and other construction trash at a wetlands area north of Auburndale.

The Green Swamp, 870 square miles of freshwater swamp and forests, is the source of the Hillsborough River, the Withlacoochee River and much of the Tampa Bay area's drinking water supply.
Source

Webb plans to amend lawsuit legislation

Published 09/12/2008 - The Daily Record
Curtis, environmental manager for Georgia-Pacific, and Greg Strong, regional director of FDEP, explained that a court order mandates the 36-inch, four-mile pipeline be built. According to Curtis, Georgia-Pacific has been dumping wastewater from the paper mill into Rice Creek — a tributary of the river — since 1948. Over those 60 years, the five-mile creek that’s narrow enough to jump over in some places, has effectively been killed. Strong claims local anglers do catch fish in Rice Creek. However, because it has been dredged, its shape is more box-like and without natural slopes, Rice Creek doesn’t contain natural or valuable grass beds that would help dilute effluent.
Source

Residents urged to curb use of fertilizer

Published September 12, 2008 - Star-Banner
As a result of nitrogen levels increasing in area rivers and springs during the past few decades, the water district nicknamed "Swiftmud" has started an educational campaign for September and October to try to persuade residents in Citrus and Marion counties to cut their fertilizer use to no more than twice a year, and to follow the directions for its use.

Fertilizer should not be used before it rains because too much water drives the fertilizer into the ground, where it heads to groundwater before grass can absorb it.
Source

State Budget Commission Sets Aside $1.7 Million For Mermaid Park

Published 9/11/08 - Hernando Today
The Legislative Budget Commission on Wednesday approved a $1.7 million appropriation to run Weeki Wachee Springs for the remainder of this fiscal year after the attraction becomes a state park on Nov. 1.

State officials projected the park would take in $3 million by the end of the current fiscal year and set aside the money for the period from Nov. 1 through June 30, 2009. The money is coming out of the state park trust fund.
Source

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Fertilizer pollution stirs debate

Published September 11, 2008 - Star-Banner
The ordinance now proposed in Marion County, which the County Commission requested to come back for a vote in 30 days, would ban fertilizer application in these places:

Within 15 feet of the top of the bank of a drainage retention area, canal, wetland or any other water body

Within 200 feet of a sinkhole or any other karst feature, such as a cave, with an opening at the surface.

Within a half-mile of the ordinary high water line of Silver Springs, the Silver run, Rainbow Springs or the Rainbow River.
Source

County revisits ordinance to protect springs

Published September 10, 2008 - Star-Banner
Century Commission will host a water summit Sept. 25 and 26 in Orlando with 120 delegates from around Florida.

During the meeting, delegates will discuss Florida's existing water resources, consequences of water shortages, best use of water resources and building codes for water efficiency.

For more information about attending the water summit at the Orlando World Center Marriott, call the Century Commission at 850-219-0082, ext.5.
Source

Divers find bigger scallops and more of them along Nature Coast

Published 9/8/08 - by CnewsPubs.com
Overall, the season started better than last year, when 2007 rebounded quickly over a couple of dismal years in a row. Scallops were larger and easier to catch this season up and down the Nature Coast, with vast numbers around Homosassa, south of the mariculture and bird racks at Crystal River and the consistently high-yielding Steinhatchee area.
Source

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Baptism Sunday at Ichetucknee Springs October 5

Published 9/9/2008 - Lake City Journal
Area churches and their members are invited to Baptism Sunday at Ichetucknee Springs on Sunday, October 5, at 2 p.m.

The purpose of this event is to promote believer's baptism, build fellowship among churches in Columbia County and demonstrate good stewardship of the springs.
Source

Sturgeon strike again; man and son injured

Published September 9, 2008 - The Gainesville Sun
A 4-year-old boy’s arm was broken, and his father was cut by a jumping sturgeon on the Suwannee River on Sunday afternoon.

The Suwannee River is home to a large population of sturgeon, who can grow to more than 8 feet long and weigh up to 200 pounds. State biologists have estimated that between 6,500 and 7,500 of the fish spend eight or nine months a year in the river.
Source

Monday, September 08, 2008

FL flooding: A river runs through it

Published September 6, 2008 - Disaster News Network
When Carolyn Wisdom bought her home near the St. Johns River she never dreamed the river would one day swirl into her home.

With the new rain, the St. Johns River, which cuts a 310 mile path through the center of the state with headwaters in southern Brevard County, will probably not crest this weekend as was predicted.
Source

Grant could help protect Three Sisters Springs

Published September 5, 2008 - Bay News 9
On Thursday, officials secured at least $6.3 million in grants from the state's Florida Communities Trust. The project was one of 18 to receive funding out of 90 throughout the state that applied.

The grant represents a major step towards buying the property from developer Hal Flowers. Currently, Flowers owns 56 acres of land surrounding Three Sisters Springs. He bought it with the intention of building homes on the land.
Source

Whatever the reason, lakes are vanishing

Published in Print September 5, 2008 - St. Petersburg Times
I've written grim columns about declining water levels in the Withlacoochee and Weeki Wachee rivers. I've scolded homeowners for jeopardizing our natural treasures by pumping millions of gallons of groundwater onto their lawns. I've said it's draining the beauty and value from our community.

They say pumping has drawn lake levels down less than a foot. The real problem is the pattern of low rainfall that dates back more than 30 years and may be due to anything from long-term cycles in the climate to global warming to loss of wetlands.
Source

Hanna leaves lots of dead fish in Brevard

Published September 5, 2008 - Florida Today
Residents have been reporting dead fish this week to state biologists.

We have already seen minor fish kills resulting from low dissolved oxygen levels in the St. Johns River, the Withlacoochee River and several lakes.

FWC biologists suspect the number and severity of fish kills will increase over the next several weeks as algae blooms explode in the St. Johns River and Indian River Lagoon.
Source

Flooding at Poe Springs

Published 9/4/08 - High Springs Herald
Tropical Storm Fay's rainfall has caused the Santa Fe River to rise, flooding the springs at Poe Springs Park. The entire springs and much of the swampland leading to the springs is flooded with dark river water. Park Manager Karl Dowda made the decision to close the springs to swimmers due to the flood waters possibly having dangerous bacteria and debris.
Source

St. Johns River Expert Talks Flooding, Future Storms.

Published September 4, 2008 - WMFE-FM
There are still spots along the St. Johns River where floodwaters from Tropical Storm Fay continue to rise. The river at Sanford is expected to top eight feet later today, bringing it to "major flood" stage, while the St. Johns at Deland is also on track to reach "major" flooding with a bit more than five-and-a-half feet. Depending on how much rain Tropical Storm Hanna brings, an already bad situation for hundreds homeowners could get even worse. 90.7's David Pitman talked about that with University of Central Florida Civil Engineering professor Dr. Scott Hagen. He has spent years studying the St. Johns and he says the river is acting just as he would expect it to, after a storm like Fay.
Source

Leaders must protect resources

Published 9/4/08 - The Florida Times-Union (Letter to the Editor)
The outrage expressed by citizens and local governments is not as much about the amount of water up for grabs as the fact that the district wants to allow an out-of-state company to bottle our groundwater at virtually no cost when we are experiencing water shortages.
Source

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Local briefs for Sept. 2, 2008

Published 9/2/08 - Star-Banner
The Rainbow Springs Basin Working Group will meet from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sept. 10 at McDonough Capital Management, 7620 South U.S. 41, Dunnellon.

Topics for discussion include Rainbow River turtles, vegetation mapping on the river, and minimum flows and levels for the river.

For more information or a detailed agenda, call Peter Colverson at 327-3270
Source

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Updated boating restrictions for the flooding St. Johns River

Published 9/1/08 - North Florida News Daily
As flooding continues on parts of the St. Johns River, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), in cooperation with local, state and federal partners, has enacted a new emergency rule for the affected areas of the river, including its associated lakes and tributaries.

The St. Johns River and its waters may be dangerous for vessels right now and the FWC is asking boaters to avoid using these areas if possible until these restrictions are lifted. There are many other water bodies available to boaters in Central Florida that are navigable at this time.
Source

Needed rain, few problems brought by Fay

Published 9/1/08 - High Springs Herald
Of the rainfall meters that the Suwannee River Water Management District monitors, Ichetucknee Springs got the most rain in the Crescent Communities with 6.58 inches.

The rainfall helped fill ponds that were empty or nearly empty because of the low aquifer. The rainfall also helped raise the level of the Santa Fe River, causing it to finally dislodge the water hyacinths that had clogged the river near High Springs.
Source

Monday, September 01, 2008

The water is flowing, and business is good

Published September 1, 2008 - Herald Tribune
...6,000 gallons a minute rushing upward from 125 feet below the surface to a little lake, just an acre and change, that may or may not constitute the Fountain of Youth.

Warm Mineral Springs is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily except
Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year. Admission is $20, with discounts for
frequent visitors, AAA members and children under 12. (The buildings on the
grounds, incidentally, were designed in Sarasota School tradition by
Victor Lundy, a contemporary of architect Paul Rudolph.) The cafe
is generally open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, call 426-1692, or visit http://www.warmmineralsprings.com
Source

FL closes river as flooding continues

Published August 31, 2008 - Disaster News Network
In addition to the two to two and a half feet of rainfall in some places, swollen streams and lakes are still pushing water into areas along the St. Johns River basin. Florida's longest river, the 310 mile long St. Johns, flows northward from Lake Hell'n Blazes to the south in Indian River County to the Atlantic Ocean at Jacksonville. Flooding is building in locations north and west of Brevard County where Fay dumped most of her rain.

The St. Johns is closed to all boat traffic between southern Brevard County and northern Volusia County to minimize wakes that might push more water into residences in the flood plane.
Source