Henderson Creek

Henderson Creek Watershed Project: Restoring the Rookery Bay Estuary

The 167 square-mile Henderson Creek watershed is a hydrologically altered system in Southwest Florida. Interflow Engineering has prepared a detailed local scale integrated hydrologic model of the Henderson Creek watershed, using the MIKE SHE and MIKE-11 integrated surface and groundwater modeling software. This modeling study is part of the National Estuarine Research Reserve System (NERRS) Science Collaborative.HendersonCreek

The model consists of a multi-layer groundwater model coupled with rainfall, irrigation, evapotranspiration, overland flow, stream (canal) flow, control structure operations, and vadose zone processes.

Interflow updated the existing Regional Scale Model developed for Collier County and created boundary conditions for a number of Local Scale Models (LSM). The LSMs were created to accurately represent the Henderson Creek watershed, in order to better quantify freshwater deliveries to the Rookery Bay Estuary.

Model grid size was reduced from 1500’ in the Collier County Model to 375’ for the local scale models. Continuous simulations were run for 11 years, with a 10-yr comparison period. Interflow developed LSM versions for existing conditions, historical conditions, and several future scenarios.

Interflow used the models to evaluate the differences in volume and timing of freshwater inflows to the Rookery Bay Estuary, where the seasonal trends, geographical distributions, and cumulative volume over the study period were assessed. This work was completed to provide guidance on establishing target flows to the estuary as they occurred under historical conditions.

Client: Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (as a subconsultant to Taylor Engineering)

Month/Year Initiated:   June 2013

Month/Year Completed:   June 2015

Relevant Services: 

  • Integrated Surface and Groundwater Modeling with MIKE SHE / MIKE 11
  • Hydrologic Restoration
  • Alternatives Analysis