What is Karst?

Karst at water’s edgeThe District is known to have a karst landscape.

Karst is a type of landscape that is formed by the dissolution of the underlying carbonate rocks (typically limestone and dolostone). In a natural process as rain falls, it reacts with carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere making the water slightly acidic. Learn more about pH. As rainfall filters down into the Floridan aquifer system, the naturally acidic rainwater slowly dissolves the aquifer's limestone. This process of dissolution leads to the development of underground caves, sinkholes, springs, and sinking streams.

Deep below the ground in Florida lies a layer of porous limestone known as the Floridan aquifer system. This aquifer is the primary source of Florida's drinking water and is one of the largest aquifers in the United States, extending across Florida and through parts of Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina. In some places, the Floridan aquifer system's limestone carbonate layers are thousands of feet thick; in others, the aquifer layers are very thin and even exposed to the surface along the major rivers such as the Suwannee.

Karst reflected in water’s surface