Mechankcal treatments such as roller-chopping, mowing, chain-sawing, and logging, and herbicide application, are increasingly used to manage fire-maintained Florida ecosystems. Goals include achieving or restoring desired vegetation structure and composition, providing habitat for listed species, and allowing the reintroduction of fire. We review studies evaluating mechanical treatments and herbicide effects on Florida's plant and animal communities. Mechanical treatments and herbicide often accelerated vegetation structure changes, but ecological benefits were generally greatest when they were combined with fire. Soil disturbances, weedy species increases, and rapid hardwood resprouting were sometimes problems with mechanical treatments. Fire itself was crucial for maintenance of individual species and species diversity. When feasible, mechanical and herbicide treatments sould be used as pretreatments for fire rather than as fire surrogates. Managers should segue to fire-only approaches as soon as possible. The effects of removing fire, the most evolutionarily significant disturbance in Florida, on fire-adapted plants and animals requires more study. If we increase the use of mechanical agents, how will this affect ecosystem resilience? We suggest caution in using these evolutionarily novel treatments, with close monitoring of their effects. More information on the long-term effects of repeated non-fire treatments is needed before such approaches are adopted uncritically. © Florida Academy of Sciences, 2010. Abstract reproduced by permission.