Falmouth Spring is in Suwannee County and is a designated Outstanding Florida Spring within the Suwannee River Water Management District. This first magnitude spring has the nickname “The Shortest River in the World.” It is a karst window, which is an unroofed section of a cavern that exposes an underground stream formed by cave collapse due to dissolution. This cave is made up of limestone, gypsum, and dolomite rock. Water exits the cave system at a conical depression, flows for 450 feet, then flows underground through a swallet. The spring is located within a 276–acre park, called Falmouth Spring Park, managed by the Suwannee River Water Management District that encompasses a mixed hardwood and pine forest. The spring ecosystem is threatened by high nitrate levels and flow reversals by the nearby Suwannee River. Recreational opportunities include diving, hiking, picnicking, walking on boardwalks, and swimming.
In 2016, the Florida Legislature passed the Florida Springs and Aquifer Protection Act.
The following images were provided courtesy of the State Archives of Florida. This incredible photographic library provides a window into the historic spring landscape, documenting changing spring and surface water levels, as well as human use and development in this special location.
This is the location for access to data related to this spring. Below, you will find links to reports, data, as well as maps and information from the Florida Springs Institute’s Blue Water Audit project about this particular spring or spring group.
The Blue Water Audit is a tool developed by the Florida Springs Institute to estimate and visualize the impact of human activities on the Floridan Aquifer. Using existing data from a variety of sources, the Blue Water Audit estimates nitrogen loading and groundwater withdrawals for the Florida Springs Region. These estimates are used to assign Aquifer Footprints – a Floridan Aquifer Nitrogen Footprint (water quality) and a Floridan Aquifer Groundwater Footprint (water quantity). Below are maps of the Blue Water Audit Floridan Aquifer Nitrogen footprint for the Falmouth Springs springshed within the Suwannee River Water Management District, as well as a map of the land use within the Falmouth Springs springshed. To find out more about the Blue Water Audit project and to learn how this tool was developed, visit Blue Water Audit.
DATA AND REPORTS
The Interactive Florida Springs Atlas was produced with generous support from the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida. The Community Foundation of North Central Florida supported this project through generous support for our Blue Water Audit project.