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The Florida Springs Institute is named after the late Dr. Howard T. Odum, the Father of Springs Ecology, who first called the world's attention to the majesty and mystery of these unique and complex ecosystems. Our founder, Dr. Robert L. Knight, studied under the direction of Dr. Odum and has conducted follow-up studies of the ecology of 18 major springs in Florida.


This website is a vital part of our mission to provide science-based education to the public and their leaders. We have gathered a collection of information about springs ecology so vast that you will find it necessary to stop by frequently.


The Florida Springs Institute is a 5o1c3 non-profit organization funded entirely through grants and private donations.



Projects & Events

Lower Santa Fe and Ichetucknee MFLS and Recovery Plan

Letter from Dr. Knight to the Alachua County Commissioners

Dear Commissioners:
I will not be able to attend this Thursday's evening meeting concerning the Lower Santa Fe and Ichetucknee minimum flows and levels (MFLs) and recovery plan. However, I would greatly appreciate your consideration of the following comments from the Florida Springs Institute concerning the City's appropriate response tot he effects of groundwater pumping on the long-term sustainability of the Florida Aquifer and our precious springs.

There us a growing public awareness and consensus in Gainesville and throughout North Florida that we are over-tapping the Floridan Aquifer. In the process, our society is negatively impacting our springs and other surface water resources. One difficulty for you is that many of the utilities and business who are responsible for the overuse of this finite resource often point their collective fingers at other users such as agriculture, bottled water, Georgia, etc., rather than acknowledging our shared responsibility for this problem.

View the full letter here.


2014 Silver Springs Restoration Plan provides a detailed description of the Silver Springs System; its contributing groundwater basin or springshed and geologic origins; its physical, chemical, and biological characteristics; its historical, existing, and predicted future trends; and ongoing threats to its ecological integrity. Most importantly, this Silver Springs Restoration Plan provides a realistic and technically sound roadmap for actions that will be required to return Silver Springs and the Silver River to their former healthy environmental status. For the full report, click here.

Have you seen the series of springs articles in the Gainesville Sun, Ocala Star Banner and other papers throughout Florida? The Gainesville Sun is selling beautiful, full-color copies of these oversized booklets. A portion of each copy sold benefits the Florida Springs Institute.

Provided here with permission: Fragile Springs series in PDF format


The Springs Eternal Project and the Florida Springs Institute recently teamed up to print oversized Springs Eternal exhibit catalogs to deliver to every Florida legislator, water management district governing board member, the Governor and DEP secretary, and other key state and local decision-makers. Thank you to everyone that donated to the project and to those who distributed catalogs to Florida leaders!


To view the panels in pdf format on the Springs Eternal website, click here.


If you hand-delivered a catalog and want to let us know to whom, please email nlyons@floridaspringsinstitute.org.


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