groups, organizations and resources

devils eye 1987

Johnny Dame
Devil’s Eye Spring, 1987

Ichetucknee Springs


If you retain only one piece of information from this Ichetucknee page, I hope it is this—protecting Florida’s springs, is really about protecting the water you use every day. Florida’s springs are windows to the vast Floridan Aquifer that sustains us. So, all our talk of protecting Florida’s springs is not only about preserving beautiful, natural wonders and popular places to recreate, it is about preserving our own health and the health of the land that sustains us. It’s about living on this land without killing it. Every single person in Florida—including those who never see a spring their entire life—are affected by what happens with the aquifer.

Several groups and organizations are working hard to address the challenges of saving Ichetucknee Springs and other local waters. They organize meetings to get this important message out to the public. They invite speakers, reach out to decision makers, and share new information. They brainstorm creative and powerful ways to get the message out to the general public; like splashing beautiful photos of springs onto the sides of city buses.

It’s a critical issue, and yet, the number of people actively involved is alarmingly small. For this reason, every single voice that joins this chorus makes a big difference. If you’d like to get involved, here are some organizations working to save Ichetucknee:


ichetucknee sacred river.moran.sRGB

Ichetucknee Sacred River
Photo by John Moran 

–         Ichetucknee Alliance

Finding solutions to the problems affecting the Ichetucknee will, at its core, be a “people process” of behavioral and cultural change, perhaps coupled with water policy changes. Why? Because everyone who uses water in Florida is simultaneously a contributor to our water problems and a potential partner in solving those problems. The Ichetucknee Alliance is committed to working with partners in the springshed and throughout Florida to achieve our vision of a healthy and protected Ichetucknee River System.

We believe that a three-pronged process will help us meet our goals:

(1) an emphasis on accurate water models, good science and continued monitoring of conditions in the Ichetucknee River system,

(2) a corresponding emphasis on the moral and ethical principles that can guide environmental decision making, and

(3) the willingness to partner with other people, agencies and organizations to find creative and substantive solutions.

Different people have studied the Ichetucknee River and its associated springs for many years. A lot of good science is available to us now, and many of the solutions we seek are already in sight.

Contact:  Lucinda Faulkner Merritt.   e-mail:   Phone:  (386) 454-0415


–        Our Santa Fe River.

This citizen-based non-profit group works to protect the waters and lands that support the aquifer, springs, and rivers within the watershed of the Santa Fe River.


–        Santa Fe River Springs Basin Working Group.

A great place to learn more about our local springs and to network with others working to protect springs is at the Santa Fe River Springs Basin Working Group. Everyone is welcome to attend the quarterly meetings and to learn from the presentations from local professionals, researchers, and activists. To find out when the next meeting is visit


–        Florida Springs Institute

For research on the Santa Fe Springs, see the Howard T. Odum Florida Springs Institute and Dr. Robert Knight’s Santa Fe Springs Restoration Action Plan.