The Environmentally Sensitive Lands Protection Program of Sarasota County is a voter-approved and taxpayer-funded program designed to acquire and protect natural lands.
- Priority sites within the county are ranked on environmental criteria including connectivity, water quality, habitat rarity, land quality and manageability.
- Acquired lands are being protected and managed.
- Most preserves have public access for nature-based recreation.
More about our preserves
Sarasota County's protected lands provide safe habitat for many threatened and native species including gopher tortoises, Florida scrub-jays, bobcats, eagles and migrant birds. Acquisition and protection of these lands ensures that their environmentally sensitive nature and habitats will be there for future generations.
- Sarasota County is partnered with the Sarasota Conservation Foundation to assist with environmental land acquisitions under the county's Environmentally Sensitive Lands Protection Program.
- A ten-member oversight committee of community representatives appointed by Sarasota County Commission, oversees the purchase of these lands and ensures the use of the land for the good of the public.
- The committee has identified 30 diverse and environmentally sensitive sites throughout the county for possible acquisition.