Assessment of the effects of water regimes
2000 Base Version 1 executed at a 2-mile resolution (2000B1 (2 Mile))
Natural System Model Version 4.6 Final (NSM_v4.6F) on the
Breeding Potential of White-tailed Deer in South Florida
Jane Comiskey and Louis J. Gross
The Institute for Environmental Modeling
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-1610
(Copyright University of Tennessee - 2003)
Hydropattern effects on white-tailed deer are a function of water
depth, areal extent and length of periods of inundation, and timing of
water flows in areas that provide suitable breeding habitat for deer.
The ATLSS White-tailed
Deer Breeding Potential Index (BPI) Model uses SFWMM restoration
scenario hydrology output to make spatially explicit estimates of the
occurrence of water in the depth ranges that restrict and preclude deer
movement and fawning success and express depth effects as changes in
the spatial pattern of breeding potential over the model area. In this
evaluation, output from the Natural Systems Model (NSMv4.6F) is compared to
that of the SFWMM baseline scenario 2000B1.
SESI result comparisons are presented for the SFWMD Indicator Regions
as well as ATLSS 3-panel maps.
Note that the Ridge & Slough indicator regions have been subdivided
for these analyses into two groups: (1) those that fall in the WCAs
(WCA-2 and WCA-3) and (2) those in Everglades National Park.
Considering these regions as a single group
masks divergent trends in the WCAs vs. the Slough system to the south.
Model years are ranked by mean
water depth (ponding) over the model area (see year ranking graph and table).
Assessment of Comparison Maps
Wet Years (as measured by mean ponding depth)
In wet years
( 1995 ,
1970 , and
higher relative index values result under NSM in what are
currently the deeper water areas of the WCAs and East Slough.
BPI values become zero under 2000B1 hydrological
regimes in the deeper water portions of WCA-3A and WCA-3B.
Under NSM, progressive loss of deer habitat as conditions become
wetter occurs primarily in Shark River Slough and NE SRS, where BPIs
decline to zero.
Dry Years (as measured by mean ponding depth)
The dry years of
1990 , and
show relatively small differences, with NSM generally producing
higher values in the WCAs and 2000B1 producing higher values in
the flowway and periphery of Shark River Slough.
Average years (as measured by mean ponding depth)
In years with average ponding depths
( 1972 ,
the pattern seen in Dry Years is repeated, but the magnitude of differences is greater.
Average of All Years
The average of all years
is similar in pattern to the Average Years, showing higher values under NSM in the WCAs, while
values under 2000B1 are higher throughout the Shark River and Taylor Slough
Assessment of Line Graphs For Indicator Region groups
The BPI time series graph for the LNWR
indicator regions shows distinctly higher deer SESI values under NSM.
Ridge & Slough (north)
The BPI time series graph for the Ridge & Slough (north) indicator regions shows
slightly higher values under NSM in the WCAs in all but the driest years.
Ridge & Slough (south)
The BPI time series graph for the Ridge & Slough (south) indicator regions shows distinctly
under 2000B1 in the Shark River and Taylor Slough systems. This difference
is more pronounced in wetter years.
The BPI time series graph for the Marl Prairie
indicator regions shows slightly higher deer BPI values for 2000B1 relative to NSM in wetter years.
The BPI time series graph for the Corbett WMA
indicator regions shows slightly higher deer BPI values for 2000B1 relative to NSM in most years.
The BPI time series graph for the Rotenberger WMA
indicator region shows distinctly higher deer BPI values under NSM in all but the wettest years.
Holey Land WMA
The BPI time series graph for the Holey Land WMA
indicator region shows distinctly higher deer BPI values under NSM in most years.
Big Cypress National Preserve
The BPI time series graph for the Big Cypress National Preserve indicator regions
shows essentially equivalent deer BPI values for the two scenarios.
The SESI Breeding Potential analysis suggests fairly distinct spatial
trends but relatively small quantitative differences in predicted
effects of the NSM hydrologic scenario compared to 2000B1.
Foraging conditions for deer are highest for both scenarios in dry years,
most notably in BCNP and the Taylor Slough/Long Pine Key and
Panhandle areas of ENP. As more water is added to the system, BPIs
decline overall and the deeper water areas become inhospitable to deer,
affecting Shark River Slough most strongly under NSM and affecting
WCA-3A most under 2000B1. Generally, NSM offers higher BPIs in the
WCAs and East Slough, while 2000B1 offers higher BPIs in North Taylor
Slough, and marginally higher values in eastern BCNP and through Shark
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