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What is a Spring?

Springs occur when water pressure causes a natural flow of groundwater onto the earth's surface.

As rainwater enters or "recharges" the aquifer, pressure is placed on the water already present. This pressure moves water through the cracks and tunnels within the aquifer, and this water flows out naturally to the surface at places called springs.

When rivers flood, the pressure created by rising floodwaters causes many springs within the Suwannee River Basin to reverse flow and bring river water into the aquifer. This reverse flow is an important part of groundwater recharge and the health of the caves associated with the springs.

Springs can be categorized in a number of ways, with the two main ones being discharge (the amount of water flow out of the spring) and spring water chemistry.

The District has conducted an inventory of many of the springs throughout the region. The following reports provide a wealth of data on locations, historic discharge, and historic water quality of many of the springs in the District.

Anatomy of a Spring

Download a print-quality cross section (JPG, 6.82MB)

Cross Section