For many years, FNPS has supported state and local acquisition of conservation lands. We operate at both the state and local level to support public acquisition and appropriate management of lands that protect intact ecosystems, native flora, and wildlife. At the state level, FNPS was a participant in the renewal of the Florida Forever Program, and has supported the ongoing funding of land acquisition programs
Based on information provided by the FDEP (Florida Department of Environmental Protection), Florida Forever has protected
- 610,270 acres of strategic habitat conservation areas
- 575,070 acres of rare species habitat conservation areas, including 962 sites that are habitats for 329 different rare species, 128 of which are federal or state-listed as endangered, 60 federal or state-listed threatened, and 20 species of special concern
- 696,240 acres of ecological greenways
- 127,580 acres of under-represented natural communities
- 482,300 acres landscape-sized protection areas
- 384,380acres of natural floodplains
- 713,420acres important to significant water bodies
- 386,040 acres minimize damage from flooding
- 9,470 acres of fragile coastline
- 305,590 acres of functional wetlands
- 686,370 acres of significant groundwater recharge areas
- 370 miles of priority recreational trails
- 351,180 acres of sustainable forest land
- 818 archaeological/historic sites
- 13,450 acres in urban service areas
FNPS continues to support full funding for the Florida Forever Programs including funds for further acquisitions and management.
Partnership with Putnam Land Conservancy
The Longleaf pine ecosystem once encompassed 90 million acres and spread from Texas to the Carolinas. Despite being reduced to fewer than 3 million acres, the remaining lands still contain some of the most diverse plant and animal communities in the world. The Florida Native Plant Society (FNPS) is working with conservation partners and concerned citizens to preserve and restore the remaining pieces of this landscape.
Thanks to the success of our Citizen Science Project to Map Rare Plant Species, we were able to share GIS data with our conservation partner, Putnam Land Conservancy (PLC). Working together and engaging the assistance of scientists, students and concerned citizens, we have identified an undeveloped area of sandhill that if protected, will preserve important wildlife habitat and a natural corridor between publically-protected conservation lands. The project area is home to numerous rare plant and animal species including Clasping Warea (Warea amplexifolia), a critically endangered plant species, the Florida Sand Skink (Plestiodon reynoldsi), Florida Black Bear (Ursus americanus floridanus), Gopher Tortoise (Gopherus Polyphemus), and Sherman’s Fox Squirrel (Sciurus niger shermani).
Above left: Jim Buckner shows off Clasping Warea plants at a parcel preserved and managed by Putnam Land Conservancy. Above right: Clasping Warea flowers and a Green Lynx spider (photo courtesy of Bob Simons).