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Florida Lake Management Society Annual Conference, Naples, Florida, June 4 – 7, 2007

BATTLE BEND SLOUGH RESTORATION APALACHICOLA RIVER (LIBERTY COUNTY, FL)

Michael J. Hill Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission Tallahassee, FL

The Apalachicola River is located in the Florida Panhandle and is the largest river in Florida. It is home to many species of endangered mussels, anadromous striped bass (Morone saxatilis) and the endangered Gulf sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus destotoi). Battle Bend is located at Navigational Mile 28.8 and was once part of the main channel of the river until the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) excavated a cutoff in 1968 that bypassed this bend in the river. Over the next two decades, sediment deposition created a blockage in the lower arm of Battle Bend that restricted fish passage and angler access into the backwater pool of the severed bendway. Navigation maintenance activities (dredging) contributed to the entrenchment of the river channel that resulted in the loss of important floodplain habitat along the river corridor.

This purpose of this project was to re-establish a channel 200’ wide by 1,000’ long at the

lower arm

of Battle

Bend.

excavators

with spoil

material

Sediment removal loaded onto barges

from Battle for transport.

Bend was accomplished Reconnection of this old

using cutoff

river

channel

will

improve

its

water

quality

during

low

flow

conditions

and

enhance

its

function

as

an

important

backwater

habitat

for

spawning,

feeding

and/or

nursery

areas

for

many

important

Apalachicola River fishes. Material was transported by barge 14 miles downstream Bluff, then, trucked 15 miles to the disposal site. Total material to be excavated 64,000 cubic yards at a total project cost of $1.94 million dollars.

to Bloody was about

________________________________________________________________________

NOTES

Session 9 – Page 6

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