Volusia Blue Spring
Volusia County’s Blue Spring State Park is in the St. Johns River Water Management District and is designated as an Outstanding Florida Spring. Volusia Blue flows at the first magnitude level and is the largest spring on the St. Johns River. The spring provides critical habitat for the West Indian Manatee, a threatened species that uses the area as a winter refuge. Manatees are numerous within the spring during the colder months. There are also many fish species present, including saltwater and freshwater species. The spring vent is approximately 20 feet below land surface and connects to a cave system with a depth of 125 feet. The spring run can be sectioned into three designated reaches: a public use area, a manatee refuge with limited public access, and a second manatee refuge with a public viewing area. Volusia Blue Spring has a significant cultural history and is the site of an Amerindian temple mound. The spring is surrounded by a dense hardwood and palm forest.
In 2016, the Florida Legislature passed the Florida Springs and Aquifer Protection Act.
Volusia Blue Spring is currently one of the twenty four Outstanding Florida Springs or Springs Groups that is considered “impaired”.
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 Volusia Blue Springs springshed within the Southwest Florida Water Management District, as well as a map of the land use within the Volusia Blue 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
Volusia Blue Spring, 2021. Video by Florida Springs Institute.
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.