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Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve What's New


Franklin, Liberty and Calhoun counties


234,715 acres


Jenna Harper, Manager
Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve
Environmental Education and Training Center
108 Island Drive
Eastpoint, FL 32328
(850) 670-7700

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Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve (ANERR) was designated in 1979. It is located in Franklin, Gulf and Calhoun counties, within one of the least populated coastal areas of the state. The Apalachicola River basin is only part of the larger Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River system (ACF) which drains an area covering approximately 19,600 miles, extending into the Blue Ridge Mountains. The Florida portion contains about 2,800 square miles and the population within Florida's basin is probably less than 100,000 individuals.

The boundary of ANERR includes the lower 52 miles of the Apalachicola River and floodplain, as well as most of Apalachicola Bay. It includes lands managed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS), FloridaFish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), Florida Park Service, Northwest Florida Water Management District (NWFWMD) and the Florida Coastal Office. Of the uplands acreage within ANERR, The Florida Coastal Office manages 6,794 acres, the USFWS manages 11,938 acres (St. Vincent Island National Wildlife Refuge), the Florida Park Service manages 2,024 acres (St. George Island State Park), FWC manages 63,814 acres and NWFWMD manages 36,241 acres. The balance of the total acreage is open water, including Apalachicola Bay Aquatic Preserve (80,875 acres).

The Apalachicola National Research Reserve is also a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve, an internationally designated protected area meant to demonstrate a balanced relationship between people and nature.

Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve Will Be Closed for the First Two Weeks of May

The Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve Nature Center (ANERR) will undergo renovations in May. The center will be closed Tuesday, May 2 through Monday, May 15, and reopen on Tuesday, May 16. ANERR will still hold scheduled meetings or classes during this time. Meeting and class participants should park in the rear parking lot accessed by Millender Street.

The Nature Center has been open for 6 years, and over that time, more than 150,000 visitors have come to learn about the wonderful Apalachicola Bay estuary that supports us, and about the upstream watershed that supports the bay. This short closure will allow contractors and staff to repair parts that have worn down over those years, and to do a thorough maintenance of the aquariums. The Nature Center will reopen to the public on Tuesday, May 16th, visitors will again be welcome to experience the refreshed River, Bay, and Gulf aquariums that demonstrate the interconnected estuarine ecosystem. Thank you for your continued support.

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Last updated: April 10, 2017

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