1995 - 2007 Ecosystem History of South Florida's Estuaries Database version 7
Entry ID: USGS_SOFIA_eco_hist_db1995-2007

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Summary
Abstract: The 1995 - 2007 Ecosystem History of South Florida's Estuaries Database contains listings of all sites (modern and core), modern monitoring site survey information (water chemistry, floral and faunal data, etc.), and published core data. Two general types of data are contained within this database: 1) Modern Field Data and 2) Core data - primarily faunal assemblages. Data are available for modern sites and cores in the general areas of Florida Bay, Biscayne Bay, and the southwest (Florida) coastal mangrove estuaries. Specific sites in the Florida Bay area include Taylor Creek, Bob Allen Key, Russell Bank, Pass Key, Whipray Basin, Rankin Bight, park Key, and Mud Creek core). Specific Biscayne Bay sites include Manatee Bay, Featherbed Bank, Card bank, No Name Bank, Middle Key, Black Point North, and Chicken Key. Sites on the southwest coast include Alligator Bay, Big Lostmans Bay, Broad River Bay, Roberts River mouth, Tarpon Bay, Lostmans River First and Second Bays, Harney River, Shark River near entrance to Ponce de Leon Bay, and Shark River channels. Modern field data contains (1) general information about the site, description, latitude and longitude, date of data collection, (2) water chemistry information, and (3) descriptive text of fauna and flora observed at the site. Core data contain either percent abundance data or actual counts of the distribution of mollusks, ostracodes, forams, and pollen within the cores collected in the estuaries. For some cores dinocyst or diatom data may be available.

Purpose: Scientists over the past few decades have noticed that the South Florida ecosystem has become increasingly stressed. The purposes of the ecosystem history projects (started in 1995) are to determine what south Florida's estuaries have looked like over time, how they have changed, and what is the rate and frequency of change. To accomplish this, shallow sediment cores are collected within the bays, and the faunal and floral remains, sediment geochemistry, and shell biochemistry are analyzed. Modern field data are collected from the same region as the cores and serve as proxies to allow accurate interpretation of past depositional environments. The USGS South Florida Ecosystem History Project is designed to integrate studies from a number of researchers compiling data from terrestrial, marine, and freshwater ecosystems within south Florida. The project is divided into 3 regions: Biscayne Bay and the Southeast coast, Florida Bay and the Southwest coast, and Terrestrial and Freshwater Ecosystems of Southern Florida. The purpose of the projects is to provide information about the ecosystem's recent history based on analyses of paleontology, geochemistry, hydrology, and sedimentology of cores taken from the south Florida region. Data generated from the South Florida Ecosystem History project will be integrated to provide biotic reconstructions for the area at selected time slices and will be useful in testing ecological models designed to predict floral and faunal response to changes in environmental parameters. Biscayne Bay is of interest to scientists because of the rapid urbanization that has occurred in the Miami area and includes Biscayne National Park. Dredging, propeller scars, and changes in freshwater input have altered parts of Biscayne Bay. Currently, the main freshwater input to Biscayne Bay is through the canal system, but many scientists believe subsurface springs used to introduce fresh groundwater into the Bay ecosystem. Study of the modern environment and core sediments from Biscayne Bay will provide important information on past salinity and seagrass coverage which will be useful for predicting future change within the Bay. Plant and animal communities in the South Florida ecosystem have undergone striking changes over the past few decades. In particular, Florida Bay has been plagued by seagrass die-offs, algal blooms, and declining sponge and shellfish populations. These alterations in the ecosystem have traditionally been attributed to human activities and development in the region. Scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) are studying the paleoecological changes taking place in Florida Bay in hopes of understanding the physical environment to aid in the restoration process. As in Biscayne Bay, scientists must first determine which changes are part of the natural variation in Florida Bay and which resulted from human activities. To answer this question, scientists are studying both modern samples and piston cores that reveal changes over the past 150-600 years. These two types of data complement each other by providing information about the current state of the Bay, changes that occurred over time, and patterns of change. Terrestrial ecosystems of South Florida have undergone numerous human disturbances, ranging from alteration of the hydroperiod, fire history, and drainage patterns through implementation of the canal system to expansion of the agricultural activity to the introduction of exotic species such as Melalueca, Australian pine, and the Pepper Tree. Over historical time, dramatic changes in the ecosystem have been documented and these changes attributed to various human activities. However, cause-and-effect relationships between specific biotic and environmental changes have not been established scientifically. One part of the South Florida Ecosystem History group of project is designed to document changes in the terrestrial ecosystem quantitatively, to date any changes and determine whether they resulted from documented human activities, and to establish the baseline level of variability in the South Florida ecosystem to estimate whether the observed changes are greater than what would occur naturally. Specific goals of this part of the project are to 1) document the patterns of floral and faunal changes at sites throughout southern Florida over the last 150 years, 2) determine whether the changes occurred throughout the region or whether they were localized, 3) examine the floral and faunal history of the region over the last few millennia, 4) determine the baseline level of variability in the communities prior to significant human activity in the region, and 5) determine whether the fire frequency, extent, and influence can be quantified, and if so, document the fire history for sites in the region.

Related URL
Link: GET DATA
Description: Data, metadata, and methodology information for Ecosystem History of South Florida Estuaries Data


Geographic Coverage
 N: 26.5 S: 24.75  E: -80.0  W: -81.83

Data Set Citation
Dataset Originator/Creator: Lynn Wingard
Dataset Title: 1995 - 2007 Ecosystem History of South Florida's Estuaries Database version 7
Dataset Release Date: 2013-03-01
Version: version 7
Data Presentation Form: MS Access database
Online Resource: http://sofia.usgs.gov/exchange/flaecohist/


Temporal Coverage
Start Date: 1994-09-27
Stop Date: 2007-04-03


Location Keywords
CONTINENT > NORTH AMERICA > UNITED STATES OF AMERICA > FLORIDA
CONTINENT > NORTH AMERICA > UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


Data Resolution
Latitude Resolution: 0.01
Degrees and decimal minutes

Longitude Resolution: 0.01
Degrees and decimal minutes


Science Keywords
BIOLOGICAL CLASSIFICATION >ANIMALS/INVERTEBRATES    [Definition]
BIOLOGICAL CLASSIFICATION >ANIMALS/INVERTEBRATES >ARTHROPODS    [Definition]
BIOLOGICAL CLASSIFICATION >ANIMALS/INVERTEBRATES >MOLLUSKS    [Definition]
BIOLOGICAL CLASSIFICATION >PLANTS    [Definition]
BIOLOGICAL CLASSIFICATION >PLANTS >MICROALGAE >DIATOMS
BIOLOGICAL CLASSIFICATION >PLANTS >MICROALGAE >DINOFLAGELLATES
TERRESTRIAL HYDROSPHERE >WATER QUALITY/WATER CHEMISTRY    [Definition]
TERRESTRIAL HYDROSPHERE >WATER QUALITY/WATER CHEMISTRY >ALKALINITY    [Definition]
TERRESTRIAL HYDROSPHERE >WATER QUALITY/WATER CHEMISTRY >DISSOLVED GASES    [Definition]
TERRESTRIAL HYDROSPHERE >WATER QUALITY/WATER CHEMISTRY >OXYGEN    [Definition]
TERRESTRIAL HYDROSPHERE >WATER QUALITY/WATER CHEMISTRY >PH    [Definition]
TERRESTRIAL HYDROSPHERE >WATER QUALITY/WATER CHEMISTRY >WATER TEMPERATURE    [Definition]


ISO Topic Category
BIOTA
CLIMATOLOGY/METEOROLOGY/ATMOSPHERE


Project
USGS_SOFIA >South Florida Information Access    [Information]


Quality
ATTRIBUTE ACCURACY REPORT:
All data are cross checked at least twice to original field notes so entries are correct. In terms of reproducibility, these are living ecosystems, so part of the purpose of the database is to compare repeat observations at the same site over time to note the changes.

The data on occurence of plants and animals are qualitative not quantitative assessments. An absence in the database does not necessarily mean an absence of the species at the sampling site. Observations of plants and animals were noted but this may not have been the primary focus of the data collection at a particular site.



LOGICAL CONSISTENCY REPORT:
The field data contained in this database have not been reviewed for publication and therefore may contain inconsistencies or errors. The field measurements (such as salinity and temperature) were made on an variety of instruments over the years. Project personnel have made every attempt to calibrate and standardize the instruments and check the data, however, the field data should be considered preliminary. Also taxonomic names may not represent the most up to date usage, but are internally consistent.

All data are cross checked at least twice to original field notes so entries are correct. In terms of reproducibility, these are living ecosystems, so part of the purpose of the database is to compare repeat observations at the same site over time to note the changes.



COMPLETENESS REPORT: The data on occurrence of plants and animals are qualitative notes - not quantitative assesments. Simply put, an absence in the database does not necessarily mean the species was absent at the site. Fieldwork was conducted for a variety of purposes over the years, and these data merely represent observations made at specific times and places, but cannot be quantitatively compared to each other. For example, a species may not have been detected at a specific site on a given date, because we were at the site to collect a core - not do a site survey. We always noted any observations made and these are recorded here, but more species would obviously be detected if we spent 30 minutes doing a snorkeling transect looking for species, than if we were there to collect a core and in the process noted the presence of certain species. Keep this in mind when looking at the data and treat the data on the biotic distributions as observational and qualitative.

HORIZONTAL POSITIONAL ACCURACY REPORT: Much of the data were collected using a GPS system to accurately capture the location of the collection site. The accuracy of the positions range from none shown to +/- 493 feet. Many of the sites fall in the +/- 92 feet range. Most of the sites in the database have a GPS accuracy value given. The earlier dates for data collection are usually the ones without an accuracy value.



VERTICAL POSITIONAL ACCURACY REPORT: Water depth data are accurate to within 0.25 meter


Access Constraints
None


Use Constraints
The field data contained in the database have not been reviewed for publication and, therefore, may contain inconsistencies or errors. The field measurements (such as salinity and temperature) have been made on a variety of instruments over the years. Every effort has been made to calibrate and standardize the instruments and check the data, however, the field data should be considered preliminary. Also, taxonomic names may not represent the most up-to-date usage, but are internally consistent.


Keywords
Broward County
Collier County
Miami-Dade County
Monroe County
Everglades National Park
Biscayne Bay
Florida Bay
Barnes Key
Bob Allen Key
Clive Key
Johnson Key
Pass Key
Rabbit Key
Russell Key
Whipray Basin
Sprigger Bank
Trout Creek
Manatee Bay
Big Cypress National Preserve
Bottle Key
Butternut Key
Cape Sable
Duck Key
Ironwood Channel
Lignumvitae Basin
Little Madeira Bay
Nest Key
Old Dan Bank
Old Sweat Bank
Park Key
Peterson Keys
Porjoe Key
Schooner Bank
Black Point
Card Bank
Featherbed Bank
Pelican Bank
Little Blackwater Sound
Lostmans River
Harney River
Shark River
Tarpon Bay
McCormick Creek
Rabbit Key Basin
Buttonwood Keys
C-111 Canal
Storter Bay
Gun Rock Point
Pavillion Key
Alligator Bay
Big Lostmans Bay
Roberts River
White Water Bay
Oyster Bay
Rodgers River Bay
Broad River
Broad River Bay
Huston River
Chicken Key
Arsenicker Key
Shell Creek
Spy Key
Black Creek Canal
Florida City Canal
Chokoloskee Bay
Buchanan Bank
Sid Key
Otter Creek
North Prong Otter Creek
Ponce de Leon Bay
Taylor Creek
Crocodile Point
Military Canal
Mowry Canal
Princeton Canal
Long Sound
Lake Key
North Canal
Samphire Keys
Monroe Lake
Convoy Point
Crab Keys
Jim Foot Key
North River
Arsenicker Shoal
Dragover Bank
Gopher Pass
Rankin Lake
Central Everglades
South East Coast
SW Big Cypress
Florida Keys
Water Conservation Area 1
Water Conservation Area 2
Water Conservation Area 3
Water Conservation Area 2A
Water Conservation Area 3A
Water Conservation Area 3B
WCA1
WCA2
WCA3
WCA2A
WCA3A
WCA3B
Alinas Reef
Middle Key Basin
Rankin Basin
Caesars Cut
Black Point Creek Canal
Dead Terrapin Basin
Arsenicker Bank
Goulds Canal
Prong Creek


Data Set Progress
IN WORK


Data Center
SOUTH FLORIDA INFORMATION ACCESS, SOUTHEAST ECOLOGICAL SCIENCE CENTER, U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR    [Information]
Data Center URL: http://sofia.usgs.gov/
Dataset ID: Ecosystem_History_of_South_Florida_Estuaries_Data

Data Center Personnel
Name: HEATHER S. HENKEL
Phone: 727-502-8028
Fax: 727-502-8182
Email: hhenkel at usgs.gov
Contact Address:
U.S. Geological Survey - St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center
600 Fourth St. South
City: St. Petersburg
Province or State: FL
Postal Code: 33701
Country: USA



Distribution
Distribution_Size: 3.2
Distribution_Format: MS Access2007
Fees: none


Personnel
LYNN WINGARD
Role: TECHNICAL CONTACT
Phone: 703 648-5352
Fax: 703 648-6953
Email: lwingard at usgs.gov
Contact Address:
926A National Center
City: Reston
Province or State: VA
Postal Code: 20192
Country: USA


BETHANY STACKHOUSE
Role: TECHNICAL CONTACT
Phone: 7036486096
Email: bstackhouse at usgs.gov
Contact Address:
Eastern Geology and Paleoclimate Science Center, USGS
City: Reston
Province or State: Virginia
Postal Code: 20192


HEATHER S. HENKEL
Role: DIF AUTHOR
Phone: 727-502-8028
Fax: 727-502-8182
Email: hhenkel at usgs.gov
Contact Address:
U.S. Geological Survey - St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center
600 Fourth St. South
City: St. Petersburg
Province or State: FL
Postal Code: 33701
Country: USA



Creation and Review Dates
DIF Creation Date: 2012-04-09
Last DIF Revision Date: 2013-08-26

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