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Public Use Programs at Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve Quick Links

The environment within the ANERR boundaries and on ANERR managed land provides a wide variety of outdoor resource based recreational opportunities. Although ANERR does not coordinate recreation, it is an important activity within ANERR. These include boat and shoreline saltwater fishing, boat and shoreline fresh water fishing, hunting, hiking, camping, nature study, birding, canoeing, kayaking, boating, shelling, beach activities, swimming and nature photography.

Maximum non-impactive, public recreation on ANERR lands is encouraged for a variety of reasons including; instilling a sense of ownership and appreciation for the lands, contributing to individual and social well being, benefiting as an informal educational tool, promoting family values, providing economic benefit to the local economy through ecotourism and making good use of publicly owned lands.

Marina at sunset

A public marina on Apalachicola Bay at sunset

Access to many points within ANERR is only by boat as approximately two thirds of the acreage is submerged bottomlands and roads do not exist in many floodplain areas. As with many other coastal and aquatic based areas, increased use leads to additional pressures on the resource, which normally leads to degradation of the resource. The last study indicates no anticipated need for additional facilities servicing salt water areas but is dated and needs to be updated. It does anticipate demand for fresh water (non-boat) facilities and a small increase in bicycle trails.

As outdoor recreation use increases in popularity on ANERR lands, the need for minimal sanitary and convenience facilities increases. DEP's Division of Recreation and Parks has developed a basic amenities package or start-up kit for DEP managed lands. The package provides for a prefabricated unisex restroom, a prefabricated weather shelter, an interpretive kiosk and stabilized parking as necessary. An assessment will be made to determine which areas may benefit from such amenities. One area for consideration is the primitive camp location on Little St. George. Other facility development considerations include the establishment of hiking trails and freshwater fishing platforms on suitable lands under ANERR management.

Apalachicola Research Reserve

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About Apalachicola NERR

Last updated: August 01, 2012

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