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Invasive vegetation to be cleared from Ted Sperling Park at South Lido

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SARASOTA COUNTY – The county's Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources department, in partnership with the Gulf Coast Community Foundation, will be removing invasive vegetation and other nuisance species of shrubs and trees from natural areas of Ted Sperling Park at South Lido Beach in the coming weeks.

This phase of the project, the first of two, will focus on removal of Brazilian pepper, Australian pine, carrotwood and other invasives from the shoreline and mangrove swamp habitat at the Sarasota park.

To ensure public safety, certain areas of the park may have limited or restricted access during periods of work. Temporary trail closings are anticipated during both phases of work, and public visitors are encouraged to pay attention to all posted signs in work areas.

The first phase will not impact the nature park or nature center, where the kayak launch is located.

The work will be done by a licensed tree service contractor and will minimize impacts to desirable species of native vegetation. Sarasota County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources staff will monitor the site while the land management and habitat restoration work is underway.

“Our goal is to enhance and restore nursery and foraging habitat and improve the diversity of plant communities and wildlife native to Sarasota Bay,” said Parks Specialist Robert Pasquali.

Additional work in Phase 2 of the project is anticipated in the high-use recreation areas of the park over the next six months. Native trees and shrubs will be planted in the park in order to add or increase shaded areas and improve native habitats.

The entire project is expected to last through May 2015.

For more information, call the Sarasota County Contact Center at 941-861-5000.