The Southwest Florida Water Management District (District) will hold a public workshop Thursday, Nov. 8, to share information about the Weeki Wachee Natural System Carrying Capacity Study. The meeting will take place at the Coast Guard Auxiliary Meeting Hall, located at 4340 Calienta St. in Hernando Beach.
The workshop will be an open-house style allowing the public to arrive at their convenience between 4 p.m. and approximately 6 p.m.
The purpose of the study is to evaluate how recreational use affects the natural system along the Weeki Wachee River. During the workshop, staff from the District, Hernando County and members of the independent third-party consultant group conducting the study will be available to explain the intent of the study and how the data will be collected.
The yearlong study will identify areas of the river impacted by recreation. Some methods of the study include counting recreational use on the river through time-lapse cameras, documenting direct impacts to the natural systems, such as prop scars, uprooting of vegetation and unnatural movement of sand, and documenting impacts of human activity like docking, wading and trampling.
Once the study is completed, the results will be published for public view. The study will not set a specific limit to recreation or address public safety but will provide the science to governing agencies with authority to make future management decisions.
To learn more about the study, visit WaterMatters.org/projects/springs/weeki-wachee-natural-system-carrying-capacity-study.