Monthly Archive: May 2018

An Intimidating Fish They Call the Stingray

It is now late May and in recent weeks I, and several volunteers, have been surveying the area for terrapins, horseshoe crabs, and monitoring local seagrass beds. We see many creatures when we are out and about; one that has been quite common all over the bay has been the “stingray”. These are intimidating creatures… …

Continue reading »

The Air Potato Challenge

By L. Scott Jackson and Julie B. McConnell, UF/IFAS Extension Bay County Northwest Florida’s pristine natural world is being threaten by a group of non-native plants and animals known collectively as invasive species. Exotic invasive species originate from other continents and have adverse impacts on our native habitats and species. Many of these problem non-natives …

Continue reading »

Restoring the Health of Pensacola Bay, What Can You Do to Help? – Sediments

In the mid 1990’s, the Bay Area Resource Council was created. This multi-county (Escambia and Santa Rosa) organization included local scientists and decision makers to help better understand the health of Pensacola Bay, develop a plan for restoration, and work collaboratively to acquire funding to do so.  At the inaugural meeting, many different scientists spoke …

Continue reading »

The Crown Conch – A Slow Predator of the Estuary

In recent weeks, volunteers and I have been surveying local estuaries counting terrapins, horseshoe crabs, and monitoring seagrass. One animal that has been very visible during these surveys is the relatively large snail known as the crown conch (Melongena corona).  Its shell is often found with a striped hermit crab living within, but it is …

Continue reading »

Storm Season is Right Around the Corner, Let’s Be Ready

Storm Season is Right Around the Corner, Let’s Be Ready Ray Bodrey, UF/IFAS Gulf County Extension Director Hurricane season technically begins on June 1st and ends November 30th. However, storm season may reach us in the Panhandle as early as Memorial Day weekend. As Floridians, we face the possibility of tropical storms and hurricanes every year. …

Continue reading »

Camp Timpoochee: Marine Camps 2018

Are you interested in learning about marine life, going fishing, or exploring the underwater world with a mask and snorkel? If so, this is the camp for you! This local education opportunity for budding marine scientists will be happening this summer at Camp Timpoochee in Niceville, FL.   The camps enable participants to explore the marine …

Continue reading »

Restoring the Health of Pensacola Bay, what can you do to help? Biodiversity

Records of the variety of aquatic life in Pensacola Bay go back to the 18th century.  According to these reports, over 1400 species of plants and animals call Pensacola Bay home.  Many of them depend on seagrass, oyster reefs, or marshes to complete their life cycle.  The greatest diversity and abundance are found on the …

Continue reading »

Using Water Wisely in the Panhandle

It’s a struggle to manage our Panhandle landscapes, especially over the late spring-summer months. Just remember, small adjustments can mean significant impacts in conserving water. Some homeowners are not aware that watering plants too much can have as much of an ill effect as not watering enough. Shallow rooted plants, as well as newly set …

Continue reading »

Restoring the Health of Pensacola Bay; what can you do to help? Introduction

Humans have inhabited the shores of Pensacola Bay for centuries. Impacts on the ecology have happened all along, but the major impacts have occurred in the latter half of the 20th century.  There has been an increase in human population, an increase in development, a decrease in water clarity, a decrease in seagrasses, and a …

Continue reading »

Septic systems: What should you do when a flood occurs?

Approximately 30% of Florida’s population relies on septic systems, or onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems (OSTDS), to treat and dispose of household wastewater. This includes all water from bathrooms and kitchens, and laundry machines. When properly maintained, septic systems can last 25-30 years, and maintenance costs are relatively low. In a nutshell, the most …

Continue reading »