Flatford Swamp

Hydrologic Restoration of Flatford Swamp

flatford1The Upper Myakka River watershed is a hydrologically altered system in Southwest Florida.  Significant environmental damage, including widespread tree mortality, has resulted from abnormal and prolonged dry-season inundation in areas that historically were flooded only seasonally.  Much of the resulting damage has occurred within a 4.5 square-mile mixed hardwood wetland known as Flatford Swamp.

Interflow Engineering has prepared a detailed integrated hydrologic model of the upper watershed, using the MIKE SHE and MIKE-11 integrated surface and groundwater modeling software.  This modeling study is part of the SWFWMD's Myakka River Watershed Initiative.

The calibrated model was used to:  

  • Evaluate past anthropogenic impacts,  
  • Investigate the linkage between land use and hydrologic changes,  
  • Determine quantities and timing of excess flows into Flatford Swamp, and  
  • Evaluate wetland hydroperiod response to potential restoration alternatives.

From the results of the historical and existing conditions model runs, Interflow staff compiled an ESRI geodatabase of the gridded model output. Surface water level and groundwater depth statistics (min, max, P10, P50, and P90) were calculated for each of the 40,000+ model grid cells.  The resulting geodatabase was used by Consultant Team members in evaluating the extent to which hydroperiods of water bodies within the watershed, including Flatford Swamp, have been altered by anthropogenic activities.

Interflow used the model to develop and evaluate six alternatives for restoring the hydrology of Flatford Swamp.  An innovative "frequency of inundation" approach was developed to compare alternatives using processed model output for wet season, dry season, and long-term average conditions.image003

Client: Southwest Florida Water Management District, in association with Singhofen and Associates, Inc.

Month/Year Initiated:   May 2011

Month/Year Completed:   December 2012

Services Provided:

  • Hydrologic Restoration
  • Integrated Groundwater / Surface Water Modeling