We assisted with environmental permitting and construction management related activities associated with county improvements to the Lely Main Canal located in the middle of the Sabal Bay project site. Project specific activities included agency coordination with South Florida Water Management District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service pre-construction listed species surveys and wetland flagging; wetland jurisdictional determinations; preparation of listed species educational documents for construction personnel; gopher tortoise relocation; bald eagle nest construction monitoring; water level monitoring; wetland habitat monitoring; coordinating exotic removal and prescribed burns; and as-built certification of project wetland restoration components.
To offset wetland impacts, the project included on-site restoration of mangrove habitat and enhancement of uplands and freshwater wetlands. Mangrove restoration activities included backfilling a canal with adjacent spoil material and re-grading to an elevation appropriate for establishment of mangrove habitat. The mangrove restoration areas were planted with saltmarsh cordgrass to stabilize the soils and aid in the natural recruitment of mangrove seeds and propagules. Upland and freshwater wetland enhancement activities included prescribed burning followed by the hand removal and treatment of exotic vegetation. Prescribed burning was utilized as a cost-effective initial treatment method for areas covered by a dense ground cover of downy rose myrtle. The initial treatment by prescribed fire allowed for easier access by ground crews; reduced the amount of chemical needed for kill treatment; and limited the amount of non-target damage to native species.