The Lake Wales Ridge is a landscape of contrasts. It includes desert-like
habitats, but absorbs 50 inches of rain most years. It is the highest point in peninsular
Florida, but stands about 300 feet above sea level. It is an enormous sand dune, but the
ocean has long since receded. Its scrub habitat is a forest, but of miniature scale. It
shelters one of the largest collections of rare organisms in the world, but its
well-drained sand is attractive to both citrus farming and housing developments.
The future of the Lake Wales Ridge Ecosystem depends upon our commitment to create
economic incentives for private landowners to manage their land for native species, to
support public land acquisition, and to ensure these lands are effectively managed.
THE CHALLENGE IS...
- to ensure the survival of this native landscape so our children's children will have an
idea of what Florida --the land of flowers--once was;
- to actively care for the land; and
- to provide recreational opportunities, while protecting the resource.
Discover how you can become
involved in protecting Florida's ancient islands--the Lake Wales Ridge.