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Site Description GTM Research Reserve Quick Topics
Aerial view of EEC and Guana Lake

Historical Background
The Guana Tolomato Matanzas ecosystem was identified as the preferred site by a committee of scientists, environmental educators and coastal managers for its potential for scientific research, environmental education opportunities and its relative pristine condition. It was officially designated in 1999.

Guana dunes

Physical Features
GTM Research Reserve is flat and low, ranging from sea level to 40 foot dunes. The Tolomato, Guana and Matanzas River estuaries form a system of bar-bounded estuaries that extend south from Jacksonville to south of Marineland in Flagler County.

Volunteers at Sanchez Mound

Archaeological Resources
There are currently 61 recorded archaeological sites within the boundaries directly managed by GTM Research Reserve, including a burial mound, numerous shell middens, a Spanish mission and homestead sites.

Coastal strand

Natural Communities
GTM Research Reserve contains natural communities ranging from oceanic to estuarine to freshwater and from wetlands to uplands.

Wading birds

Native Species
GTM Research Reserve is located on the boundary of temperate and tropical habitats, giving it an enormous diversity of species. A species list recently compiled for Guana River Marsh Aquatic Preserve indicated the presence of at least 44 mammal, 358 bird, 41 reptile, 21 amphibian, 303 fish and 580 plant species.

Loggerhead hatchling

Listed Species
GTM Research Reserve contains critical habitat for 48 animal and 8 plant species that are listed as endangered, threatened or of special concern.

Asian green mussel

Invasive and Problem Species
Invasive species are those wild or feral plants or animals that are not native to Florida, but were introduced as a result of human-related activities and have become a threat to natural communities. The best strategy to protect GTM Research Reserve's natural resources from invasive species is prevention.

Aerial view of Guana marsh 

Guana River Marsh Aquatic Preserve
Guana River Marsh Aquatic Preserve is between Jacksonville and St. Augustine and houses the Environmental Education Center of GTM Research Reserve. The preserve includes approximately 28,000 acres of wetlands and open water and 11,500 acres of uplands.

Pellicer Creek 

Pellicer Creek Aquatic Preserve
Pellicer Creek Aquatic Preserve is a small preserve (only 505 acres) along the border between Flagler and St. Johns counties that drains into the Matanzas River.

GTM Research Reserve

Core Programs

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About GTM



Last updated: September 19, 2013

  3900 Commonwealth Boulevard M.S. 235 Tallahassee, Florida 32399 850-245-2094
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