In 1996, as part of the Bayou Chico restoration efforts, the Jones Swamp Wetland Preserve targeted 1,300 acres within the Jones Creek Watershed for acquisition to provide wetland buffering and protection for water quality improvement to the Pensacola Bay area.
Management activities underway include:
- Performing prescribed burns to enhance native vegetation and reduce fuel loads to assist in preventing catastrophic wildfires. (prescribed fire as best management tool)
- Installing beaver dam levelers to reduce flooding in residential areas near the preserve.
- Reconstructing more than one mile of creek section to restore natural stream processes. The rock vanes reduce erosion and increase biodiversity in Jones Creek. The level spreader ponds slow stormwater runoff and aide in restoring the significant functions of the wetlands.
- The Glynn Key Stormwater Educational Project and Boardwalk, In partnership with Mr. Glynn Key and South Gate Plaza, the county acquired an old, overgrown stormwater pond and converted it into a wet pond to provide better water treatment before entering Jones Creek. Educational signage on the boardwalk identifies native plants and animals that may be seen from the boardwalk. The Glynn Key Boardwalk Trail links to the Lexington Terrace Park which has a paved trail, playground, community center, pavilions and a dog park.
Opportunities being pursed for the future include:
- A southwest greenway traversing the county from the Lexington Terrace Park to the Tarkiln Bayou State Recreational Preserve and Big Lagoon State Park. This area will be a greenbelt through urbanized areas with a trail system for approximately 15 miles through various ecosystems.
- Establishing the preserve as a site along the Florida Birding Trail.
Operating hours: sunrise until sunsetPlease remember take only memories, leave only footprints.