Sarasota County has contracted with Ecosystems Technologies, Inc. of Ft. Myers for restoration of Red Bug Slough.
Construction is expected to begin in mid April, and county officials estimate the project will be completed by November, 2013, according to a county update on the project.
As part of a $1 million habitat restoration project, Sarasota County will restore portions of wetlands within the 72-acre preserve. The restoration project will remove invasive flora, create additional habitat for birds and wildlife and improve the flow and natural filtration of water in a drainage basin that ultimately feeds into Sarasota Bay and was partially dredged in the early 1900s.
All existing trails will remain natural and be maintained. The preserve will remain open to the public throughout construction, with limited access around the construction sites. Temporary trail closures may also be necessary. The project was funded by a $500,000 grant from the Southwest Water Management District and matching funds through the county’s penny tax revenue.