Under the leadership of Refuge Forester Daniel Barrand, the Lower Suwannee Refuge plans to plant 45 acres of longleaf pine on 19 sites and 15 acres of wiregrass plugs on 4 sites on the Levy County side of the refuge.
This restoration project is a site conversion from slash pine to longleaf. Fifty-four thousand containerized longleaf and 18,000 containerized wiregrass plugs will be planted at a density of 6' x 6', which will be 1,200 trees per acre and 1,200 plugs per acre.
The Lower Suwannee NWR has successfully finished the fourth of 10 hunts this season, General Gun Season. The fifth hunt of the season is the three-day Family Senior Hunt on November 20 to 22. The sixth is a four-day Thanksgiving General Gun hunt from November 26 to 29. The Refuge scheduled these hunts for families coming together during Thanksgiving to provide these opportunities on the Refuge.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District has proposed a project for maintenance dredging of the McGriff Channel at Suwannee River to restore the channel depth and width for safe and efficient navigation along the length of the extant federal navigation project.
The proposed dredging will take place at McGriff Pass (Wadley Pass), at the mouth of the Suwannee River in Dixie County, and encompasses a portion of the Suwannee River Federal Navigation Project, which borders Levy and Dixie counties. The district proposes to dredge 50,000 to 60,000 cubic yards of material for placement at Cat Island, restoring beach area lost in recent decades to erosion and sea level rise.
The placement will beneficially create some 10 acres of bird habitat and help protect archaeological deposits affected by erosion. The project is tentatively scheduled to be constructed from December 2021 through March 2022 to avoid impacting the Gulf sturgeon migration period. Future periodic maintenance dredging may occur anywhere within the federally authorized channel.
A copy of the Draft Environmental Assessment and supporting documents are available for public review at the link below. Go to the link, then click on Dixie County and scroll down to Maintenance Dredging of the McGriff Channel at Suwannee River: www.saj.usace.army.mil/SuwanneeRiverDredgingEA.
Interested individuals and parties are invited to review the EA and submit comments for consideration either via email or by U.S. Postal Service. The district strongly requests that comments be submitted via email due to staffing impacts of the coronavirus.
Send comments via email to:
Mail comments via U.S. Postal Service to:
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District
701 San Marco Boulevard
Jacksonville, Florida 32207-8175
Comments must be received by Dec. 1, 2020, for consideration.
The Fish and Wildlife Service featured the Lower Suwannee Refuge and former Friends president Greg Lang in a recent story about hunting on national wildlife refuges.