Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve

The Florida Coastal Office (FCO) manages more than 4 million acres of the most valuable submerged lands and select coastal uplands in Florida. With support from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), FCO manages 41 aquatic preserves, three National Estuarine Research Reserves (NERRs), the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and the Coral Reef Conservation Program.

The Florida Coastal Office also oversees the Florida Coastal Management Program which coordinates the protection and enhancement of the state's natural, cultural and economic coastal resources. The Outer Continental Shelf Program is responsible for conducting the Department's technical review of activities that occur in federal waters on the Outer Continental Shelf.

Aquatic Preserve Society

A new statewide citizen support organization (CSO), the Aquatic Preserve Society, has been formed to promote the protection of Florida's 41 aquatic preserves.

"We are very excited to see how the Aquatic Preserve Society develops," said Kevin Claridge of the Florida Coastal Office. "CSO groups have been instrumental in our efforts across the state, and we look forward to adding more strength and stability to this network."

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About Us

Florida's extensive coastline and natural resources have made this state a vacation destination for visitors and a cherished home for millions. Our state's economic drivers – tourism and marine industries for example - depend on clean water, a myriad of diverse aquatic habitats, world-class beaches, and coral reefs. The professionals of the Florida Coastal Office serve as the eyes and ears of these sensitive coastal areas. Water quality monitoring, scientific research, and monthly wading bird censuses are but a few of the ways staff contributes valuable information to land managers, elected officials and others, whose daily decisions affect the health of Florida's estuaries.

Mangrove Restoration

Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve has entered into a research partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to conduct a long-term study of a mangrove die-off area near Goodland. USGS awarded funding to this project for a minimum of three years to assess the 225-acre hydrologic restoration, partially underway, at Fruit Farm Creek.