Hole-in-the-Donut Wetland Restoration in the Everglades

hole-in-the-donutAs you probably know by now, the Everglades is going through a number of restoration projects that are costing in the millions. Why? The Everglades is being restored to its natural state. Many projects are working on getting the water in the Everglades to flow in the proper direction again.

For this article, we wanted to discuss the Hole-in-the-Donut Restoration Project, which is a 6,300-acre restoration. For this restoration, the Park, along with Miami-Dade County and the National Park Foundation have partnered up to restore these acres of former agricultural land in the Park known as “Hole-in-the-Donut.”

Through the Miami-Dade County, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Florida Water Management Districts, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, this restoration project came about as an In-Lieu Fee Project and mitigation bank. Using mitigation funds from credits applied to permitted development projects in Miami-Dad and Broward Counties, the Park started the wetland restoration and exotic plant removal.

This is a large project that will restore 6,300 acres of short-hydroperiod wetland, but also help the habitats around Hole-in-the-Donut that are suffering from the Brazilian pepper invasion. This project has been more than a decade in the making.

In this project, invasive plants will be removed, restoration, monitoring, and management will occur, and mitigation will be provided for permitted development activities in Miami-Dade and Broward counties.

As the area becomes restored, more naturally-occurring plants, like sawgrass, are multiplying and replenishing themselves. Birds and animals are returning more and more back to this area.

As of right now, 5,328 acres have been restored.

Through restoration projects like this one, the ecosystem can return back to normal in the Everglades, and more plants and animals will begin to thrive.


Explore the Everglades in an Airboat

Restoration is crucial to the survival of the Everglades. Without restoration, the wetland would disappear. Come explore this majestic land by airboat. Airboats can bring visitors to places beyond where a walking or biking trail can reach. To book an airboat tour, call Captain Mitch’s Airboat Tours at 800-368-0065 or click our Private Everglades Airboat Tours page.