Optional Field Trips

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

This year’s GGAA features two optional field trips mid-week on Wednesday, June 8. Because of the interactive nature of these trips, attendance is limited for each trip as indicated below, and advance registration is required. These trips will fill up fast, so don’t delay. Register as soon as possible.

  • Field trip registration will close on May 6 or once the limit for each trip is reached.
  • Indicate your trip preference when registering online.
  • You may only sign up for one trip.
  • A 50% cancellation fee applies if a refund is requested.

These activities are offered on a first-come, first-served, basis. Register early to ensure admission. Advance registration and in person attendance are required for all field trips.

Archbold Biological Station and Buck Island Ranch

Trip 1: Archbold Biological Station & Buck Island Ranch

Lake Placid, FL
Limit: 90
$50 USD
7:00am Morning Refreshments [Conference Center Lobby]
7:30am Trip 1 Buses Depart Hotel
10:00am–3:00pm Presentations, demonstrations, and a swamp buggy tour by Archbold Scientists
12:00pm–1:00pm Break for Lunch and a Group Photo
2:30pm–3:00pm Farewell and Board Buses for Return to Hotel
6:00pm Arrive at host hotel

In pursuit of sustainable food production, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) launched the Long-Term Agroecosystem (LTAR) network, comprised of 18 locations across the U.S. These sites work together to address national and local agricultural priorities and advance the sustainable intensification of U.S. agriculture. The Archbold Biological Station/University of Florida is one of these sites and is used to develop and assess sustainable agricultural production systems that integrate environmental and socio-economic needs from local, regional, to national scales.

Co-located at this site is Buck Island Ranch, a 10,500 acre cattle ranch among the top-20 commercial cow-calf producers in Florida. Its herd is ~3,000 Brahman-cross cows bred to 150 Angus or Charolais bulls. Over 2,300 calves are raised annually and subsist mainly on grass in the summer but are supplemented with feed in the winter and free choice mineral year-round.

During the Tour

Archbold scientists will give presentations and demonstrations sharing their latest research on ecosystem and cattle GHG emissions and measurements, including supplemental feed and enzymes research. We’ll board a Swamp Buggy and tour several sites on the ranch where ecosystem GHG monitoring is being conducted. We will also get to see a typical Florida beef cow/calf production system in operation.

Tour Requirements

The weather will be hot and humid, and we will be outdoors. Wear cool, lightweight clothing and comfortable shoes. A hat and/or sunscreen is advised. Bottled water and lunch will be provided.

Orlando Water Reclamation Facility

Trip 2: Tour the City of Orlando Water Reclamation Facility

Orlando, FL
Limit: 50
$20 USD
8:00am Morning Refreshments [Conference Center Lobby]
8:30am Trip 2 Bus Loads and Departs Hotel
9:00am–11:00am Tour Reclamation Facility
11:00am–11:30am Board Bus & Return to Hotel

The Water Reclamation Division collects and treats approximately 45 million gallons per day of wastewater through a system of gravity and force mains, lift stations, and water reclamation facilities. The treated (or reclaimed) water is then used for a variety of beneficial uses, such as irrigation.

During the Tour, you will see:
  • Hands-on displays of the wastewater treatment process and its effects on the environment in the Education Center
  • Outdoor walk of facility showcasing the machinery needed to collect and treat 14 million gallons of water a day
  • Garden area of 500 square feet highlighting the use of reclaimed water and eco-friendly practices
Tour Requirements
  • Closed toe shoes are required. A hat and/or sunscreen is advised.
  • Only the Education Center is wheelchair accessible. The Water Reclamation Facility part of the tour is not.
Please Note: Both trips are subject to change, depending on potential COVID-19 restrictions in effect at that time. If a field trip cancels, registrants will receive a full refund or be given an option to switch to another activity.


The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is a federal-state-county partnership dedicated to developing knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and the life sciences, and enhancing and sustaining the quality of human life.


The Office of Conferences & Institutes is a full service planning agency at the University of Florida. OCI was created to support the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) mission to develop knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and to make that knowledge available to people to sustain and enhance the quality of human life.


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