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2005 "Volunteers Working With Invasives"
Grants Report Form

Display Report


Project Title: Mahoe Removal on Alligator Curve on Wildlife Drive
Region: 4
Station: J.N. 'Ding' Darling NWR (41540)
Contact Person:
Name and Phone Number
Robert Jess: 239.472.1100 x 223
Project Description:
(Up to 250 words)
Approximately one (1) acre of mahoe or sea hibiscus was removed at Alligator Curve on Wildlife Drive by refuge staff using chain saws, a small loader and dump trailers over a three day period, August 12, 13 and 15. All cuttings were transfered to the Gavin site for disposal. Staff raked and prepared the area for native plant restoration in September 2005 to take advantage of the remainder of the 'wet' season so plants would establish. Eleven staff and volunteers participated in the native plant restoration on September 16, 2005. Sixty four (64) native shrubs and trees were planted in 1.5 hours. All natives planted are endemic to Sanibel Island or surrounding area. Most of the planted species produce berries or seeds important for wildlife forage. In addition, a 250 foot, five foot high galvanized fence was installed for security purposes. Removal of the mahoe created a security and access issue with the exclusive private community to the west and which the mahoe provided a natural barrier. Law enforcement are now encountering individuals on the Wildlife Drive who accessed the Refuge where the mahoe was removed.
List of Invasives Species Targeted:Common NameScientific Name
  mahoe, sea hibiscus Hibiscus tiliaceus
Project Status: Completed
Project Completion Date
or Estimated Completion Date:


Volunteer Affiliation:
(Check all that apply)
VA_FriendsGrp                                 VA_Other
Volunteer Involvement:
Describe the type of work the volunteers performed. (Up to 150 words)
The Federation of Fly Fishermen (3) assisted staff on September 16, 2005 with planting of native shrub and tree species following removal of the mahoe or sea hibiscus during site restoration efforts. This fish conservation group has assisted with other grant projects in Fiscal Year 2005 including the Mangrove Initiative and Bird Nesting Island exotics removal projects.
Total Number of Volunteers: 3
Total Number of Volunteer Hours: 5
List both new and existing partnerships utilized in this project. (Up to 150 words).
The Ding Darling Wildlife Society provided funding for purchase of drinks on native planting day. Staff enlisted the service's of the Federation of Fly Fishermen to aid in native shrub and tree planting. Native shrubs and trees were purchased from the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF). Two vegetation management technicians, hired and cost shared between the Refuge, City of Sanibel, and SCCF will water shrubs and trees until they become established. The Region 4 Invasive Species Strike Team treated mahoe stumps with herbicide during removal efforts. The R4 ISST will monitor the site for establishment of invasive exotics as site was disturbed during mahoe removal. Refuge volunteers will assist the R4 ISST in flagging invasive exotic plants as the site and native plants mature.


Project Results:
Give an overview of the results of the project. Include quantifiable measure of success, such as maps produced, efficacy of control measures, number of sites where invasions were detected early and responded to, number of community contacts, etc. (Up to 250 words).
The project resulted in the removal of the last significant stand of mahoe or sea hibiscus on the J.N. 'Ding' Darling NWR. The large infestation was an eye sore on the Wildlife Drive (Alligator Curve). Approximately 750,000 visitors access the Wildlife Drive annually. Eleven staff and volunteers planted 64 native shrub and tree species, endemic to the island, after 98% of the mahoe or sea hibiscus was removed. Remaining stumps and re-sprouts were treated with herbicide. Herbicide treatments provided 95% control. Hurricane Rita's squalls provided needed rain and moisture days after planting that will aid in root and plant establishment.
Number of Acres Treated: 1
Number of Acres Inventoried and/or Mapped: 1
Number of Acres Restored: 1


Budget: Account for funds in broad categories such as equipment, volunteer stipends, travel, coordinator salary/contract, etc.

Total Grant Amount:

$ 2500

Breakdown of Expenditures:


Total $ Spent
% of Total Grant
Equipment / Supplies 1560 62
Biocontrol Agents
Volunteer Stipends
Volunteer Coordinator Salary/Contract
Restoration Materials 940 38
TOTAL 2500 100

Recommendations: (OPTIONAL)
How useful was this program for meeting refuge invasive species objectives and how can it be improved?
The program is excellent for small invasive species projects. Rules should be amended to permit use of contractors. Large or expansive jobs are simply too overwhelming for older volunteers.


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