Monthly Archive: September 2016

Are We Losing Our Natural History Skills?

Recently I attended a conference that included a series of talks at the University of Florida’s Whitney Marine Lab. One of the talks was presented by the director of the lab, Dr. Mark Martindale, who discussed the history and mission of the lab.  However, in that talk he made a comment that caught my attention. …

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Panhandle Estuaries – National Estuaries Week

Humans have been settling on, and around, coastal estuaries since they first arrived in the panhandle over 10,000 years ago. These bodies of water have provided food and recreation as long as anyone can remember.  They are a magnet for those looking to build homes or businesses – and we continue to be attracted to …

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Celebrating Choctawhatchee Bay – National Estuaries Week

September 17-24, 2016 was the nation’s 28th time to celebrate America’s coasts and estuaries during National Estuaries Week.  This week helps us to remember to appreciate the challenges these coastal ecosystems face, along with their beauty and utility. Estuaries, semi-enclosed bodies of water with both fresh and saltwater, dot the Gulf Coast of the United …

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The Autumn Journey of Red Drum

Cool mornings this week reminded everyone fall is just around the corner. This subtle change in temperature inspires many of us to behave differently. It’s actually enjoyable to be outside again. Now, it’s easier to relax and drink a morning cup of pumpkin spice coffee on the porch or maybe take a brisk evening walk. …

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Biking to a Healthier Community

If you told me earlier this summer that I would “accidentally” bike 18 miles one afternoon, I’d have laughed. I’ve always loved biking, but rarely have time for long distance rides. As part of the mobile workshops for an Extension professional development meeting in Burlington, Vermont, fifteen of us met up with the coordinator of …

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Let’s Go Camping!

This past week I was camping at a state park near Gainesville. Working on a variety of computer related items while sitting in my chair, I was acutely attuned to the sounds of life around me.  A small “pat-pat-pat” could be heard in the leaf litter around the tent.  Curious as to what was making …

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The International Coastal Clean Up is Coming in September – how are we doing with marine debris in our area?

People have been trying to do something about marine debris, and solid waste in general, since we saw the commercial of the crying Indian in the early ‘70’s. Have we made any improvement? Yes… but there are still problems to deal with.   Literally millions of tons of solid waste are produced and disposed of …

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An Early Study Shows the Invasion of the Asian Tiger Shrimp Could Have an Impact on Native Shrimp

The Asian Tiger Shrimp (Penaeus monodon) have been reported across the northern Gulf of Mexico for several years now but unlike Cogon grass, Chinese tallow, and Lionfish they have not really made the press.  We know they are there, but captures in shrimp trawls seem to be infrequent… it just does not look like a …

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September is Microplastics Awareness Month

Going along with the International Coastal Clean Up, UF/IFAS Extension will be promoting September as Microplastics Awareness month. If you have not heard, microplastics are small pieces of plastic < 5mm in diameter. Some are fragments from larger pieces of plastic that have been broken down by the elements, others are produced at that size …

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