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Upper Floridan and Biscayne Aquifers

Sinkholes from subsidence event, Florida, February 1998
Sinkholes from subsidence event, Florida, February 1998. Over 700 sinkholes formed over a 20-acre area in response to well drilling. A well had been drilled about 20 feet into a cavity, when air-lift well-development methods began being used. Immediately after, small sinkholes started appearing in the surrounding area. Subsidence continued for several hours, with sinkholes closest to the well expanding to become the largest in the area. (Photo by Ann Tihansky)
Sinkhole-formed lakes near Winter Haven, FL Sinkhole-formed lakes near Winter Haven, FL. These sinkholes, which often are filled with permeable surficial sands, provide more direct avenues for water from the surficial aquifer system to recharge the underlying Upper Floridan aquifer. (from Spechler and Kroening, 2006)
Loss of water from the Peace River through underlying conduit during low-flow period, May 2004 Loss of water from the Peace River through underlying conduit during low-flow period, May 2004. The Peace River in this area is characterized by shallow, sometimes exposed carbonate units, with karst features that vary in type and size and include sinkholes, subsidence depressions, dissolution pipes, and enlarged fractures. (from Spechler and Kroening, 2006)

Photos of Karst Features

Karst produces distinctive topographic features that can be prominent and distinctive. There are photographs available of the following karst features in the Upper Floridan and Biscayne aquifers:

  • Sinkholes
  • In-Stream Sinkholes

... view photos

Featured Publications

  • Cunningham, K.J., and Sukop, M.C. (2011) Multiple technologies applied to characterization of the porosity and premeability of the Biscayne aquifer, Florida: USGS Open-File Report 2011-1037, 8 p.
  • Harvey, R.W., Metge, D.W., Shapiro, A.M., Renken, R.A., Osborn, C.L., Ryan, J.N., Cunningham, K.J., and Landkamer, L.L. (2008) Pathogen and chemical transport in the karst limestone of the Biscayne aquifer--3. Use of microspheres to estimate the transport potential of Cryptosporidium parvum oocysts: Water Resources Research, vol. 44, p. #W08431.
  • Spechler, R.M., and Kroening, S.E. (2006) Hydrology of Polk County, Florida: USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2006-5320, 114 p.

... view all (9 more)

Helpful Contacts

There are 2 USGS scientists you can contact for more information about this aquifer.

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Page Last Modified: Monday, 30-Jan-2012 16:39:46 EST