Celebrate National Water Quality Month

Mangrove Trees

National Water Quality Month offers a chance to reflect on Florida’s pristine waterways 

Florida is one of the nation’s flagship locations for clean, beautiful water. Whether it’s a beach, river, lake or stream, you can experience the top-notch natural waters at many of Florida’s state parks.  

Mangroves in Florida 

Mangrove trees in Florida play such a key role in keeping our water clean that they are protected by law. They provide many benefits to the environment, including: 

  • Protecting coastlines. 
  • Serving as nesting areas. 
  • Providing habitat for fish. 
  • Improving the quality of coastal waters.  

There are three varieties of mangrove trees that are native to Florida: red, white and black. Non-native mangroves found in Florida include the large leaf mangrove and Asian black mangrove. 

To witness the contribution of mangroves up close, visit an area such as Don Pedro Island State Park where native mangroves grow on the eastern side of the island. Another way to experience these unique plants is to paddle through a mangrove tunnel at Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park. These aquatic trails are lined with mangroves and are shaded by their leaves.

Mangrove Tunnel

Water Bottle Refill Stations 

One of the easiest ways to keep our parks and waters clean is to use the new water bottle refilling stations provided by Duke Energy Florida in partnership with the Florida State Parks Foundation and Florida State Parks. 

By reducing waste and encouraging the use of reusable water bottles, you can help protect our aquatic ecosystems. 

Whenever you visit Florida State Parks, it is important to remember these safety tips:  

  • Bring drinking water in a reusable container, use sun protection and wear comfortable shoes.  
  • Give wildlife plenty of space by remaining at least 25 yards away. If you are close enough for a selfie, you are too close. Binoculars will help you see wildlife from a distance.  
  • Do not attempt to feed wild animals. It's dangerous for you and for the animals.  

Set off on your next adventure and remember, you too can reduce by reuse! 


Park ranger using refill station