The Florida Department of Environmental Protection has the responsibility to perform Formal Wetland Delineations, provide training in wetland delineation and classification to regulatory agencies, provide technical assistance to other programs of the department, and ensure the consistent statewide use of the Florida Unified Wetland Delineation Methodology (Chapter 62-340, F.A.C.).
What is a wetland?
Because the term wetland can mean different things to different people, it is necessary to have a technical definition to standardize the concept.
Florida wetlands are defined as those areas that are inundated or saturated by surface water or ground water at a frequency and a duration sufficient to support, and under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soils. Soils present in wetlands generally are classified as hydric or alluvial, or possess characteristics that are associated with reducing soil conditions.
The prevalent vegetation in wetlands generally consists of facultative or obligate hydrophytic macrophytes that are typically adapted to areas having soil conditions described above. These species, due to morphological, physiological or reproductive adaptations, have the ability to grow, reproduce or persist in aquatic environments or anaerobic soil conditions. Florida wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bayheads, bogs, cypress domes and strands, sloughs, wet prairies, riverine swamps and marshes, hydric seepage slopes, tidal marshes, mangrove swamps and other similar areas. Florida wetlands generally do not include longleaf or slash pine flatwoods with an understory dominated by saw palmetto.
However, just as the general term wetland has been subject to varying opinions so have some of the concepts of the definition. To further clarify and standardize the intent of the definition, a methodology for identifying and delineating wetlands is provided in Rule 62-340 F.A.C.
February 17, 2023 - 10:16am
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The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is the state’s lead agency for environmental management and stewardship – protecting our air, water and land. The vision of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection is to create strong community partnerships, safeguard Florida’s natural resources and enhance its ecosystems.