PALATKA, Fla., June 22, 2020 — The St. Johns River Water Management District is conducting a pilot project in the DeBary Bayou in Volusia County involving the mechanical removal of nuisance and exotic vegetation.
“This mechanical harvesting pilot project will guide the District’s expansion of its vegetation management toolbox to include techniques that not only remove problematic vegetation but also remove excess nutrients from our waterways,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle.
The project will enhance the health of the DeBary Bayou (also known as Gemini Springs Run) and associated wetlands through nutrient removal and increased water exchange between the marsh and the bayou, which flows from Gemini Springs and Mullet Lake to Lake Monroe. The Gemini Springs Alliance voiced support for the project.
Work will begin June 22 when contractors start hauling rock to the site and district staff begin stabilizing the access road.
Visitors to the area may observe increased personnel and equipment at the Gemini Springs west trailhead project site as nuisance vegetation is harvested and hauled via barges to a temporary site near the Spring-to-Spring Trail. From there, the vegetation will be trucked to the west and will cross the paved recreational trail as the material is moved off-site for disposal.
The district urges extreme caution when approaching the project site or trucks. Contact district land manager Peter Henn at 321-984-4942 with questions.