Basin 22 Mitigation Bank

Basin 22 Mitigation Bank

The Basin 22 Mitigation Bank is 5,000 acres of historic cattle pasture and natural rangeland. The site is presently comprised of a mosaic of wetland and upland communities, and pasture. The existing major habitats include the improved pasture, pine flatwoods, mixed wetland hardwoods, willow/shrubs, hydric pine flatwoods, freshwater marshes, wet prairies, Brazilian peppers, Australian pines, roads, and ditches.


Basin 22 Mitigation Bank is located in the Central Indian River Lagoon Basin (Basin 22); its location and proximity to other conservation lands, including the Blue Cypress Conservation Area (BCCA) and the Sand Lakes Conservation Area, is significant. The BCCA is adjacent to and west of the project site and is an important component in the Upper St. Johns River Basin Project. BCCA is a corridor and connects to other SJWMD and public conservation lands including, but not limited to, Three Forks, Fort Drum, and River Lakes. Other lands surrounding the bank site are mostly agriculture with a few commercial parcels to the south along SR 60.


The majority of the active improved pasture areas are located in the central portion of the site. The western and eastern portions of the property are relatively unimproved and exist in a more naturalized condition with a mosaic of upland and wetland community types. The property has been in agriculture use since at least the 1950’s. The project site has undergone extensive draining and ditching since the 1950’s, primarily to maintain agriculture operations.


Currently, extensive ditching and diking is significantly altering the hydrology and hydroperiod over the ranch and modifying the groundwater elevations on the ranch. Ditching resulted in the conversion of many wetlands to upland and/or the degradation of the hydrology and hydroperiod of the remaining wetlands and even changing the historical community type to shallower wetland systems (i.e. freshwater marsh to wet prairie). Water from the site is discharged quickly through the main center ditch to the south prong of the St. Sebastian River and eventually to the Indian River Lagoon.


A significant amount of wildlife currently utilizes the ranch, including threatened and endangered species. Species observed on-site include scrub jay, American alligator, Florida mottled duck, sandhill crane, Florida turkey, gopher tortoise, southeastern American kestrel, little blue heron, snowy egret, tricolored heron, white ibis, white tail deer, feral hog, wood duck, and wood stork. Snail kites are known to occupy the BCCA and it is possible they utilize the Corrigan property. Florida panthers may utilize the site, since several collared panthers have been documented in the Upper St. Johns River Basin and within 8 miles of the Corrigan Ranch.