In this Issue:
  • Two Manatees in Two Weeks
  • Cold Stunned Marine Life
  • Exploring the Gulf of Mexico: Phytoplankton Part 2
  • The Marshes, they are a-changin’
  • In Search of Horseshoe Crabs
  • The American Alligator: a new nuisance for the panhandle?
  • Panhandle Outdoors Water School – St. Joseph Bay
  • The Cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus)
  • The Summer of Sharks
  • Ecotourism in Northwest Florida
  • Coastal Wildlife

    Two Manatees in Two Weeks

    As a young boy growing up here in the panhandle, I had heard of this thing called a manatee – but had never seen one. They came more into the light when I was a teenager and becoming interested in marine biology.  I was the president of the high school marine biology club and one …

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    Cold Stunned Marine Life

    Man what a winter! Between multiple days below freezing, tough traveling, and the flu it has been a brutal winter season so far. It is not that different for some of our marine wildlife friends. The low temperatures have driven marine water temperatures down as well, particularly in the shallow areas.   There have been many …

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    Exploring the Gulf of Mexico: Phytoplankton Part 2

    In the last article, we discussed what phytoplankton are, what their needs were, and their importance to marine life throughout the Gulf and coastal estuaries. In this article, we will discuss the different types of phytoplankton found in our waters. Marine scientists interested in the diversity and abundance of phytoplankton will typically sample using a …

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    The Marshes, they are a-changin’

    Discovering something new is possibly the most exciting thing a field biologist can do. As students, budding biologists imagine coming across something no one else has ever noticed before, maybe even getting the opportunity to name a new bird, fish, or plant after themselves. Well, here in Pensacola, we are discovering something that, while already …

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    In Search of Horseshoe Crabs

    Back in the spring, I wrote an article about the natural history of this ancient animal. However, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is interested in the status of horseshoe crabs and they need to know locations where they are breeding – and Florida Sea Grant is trying to help. If you are not …

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    The American Alligator: a new nuisance for the panhandle?

    I recently saw a photograph of an American Alligator (Alligator mississppiensis) crossing Perdido Key Drive on a heavy rain day.  This encounter would surprise some, and unnerve many.  The majority of the nuisance wildlife calls I receive are for snakes.  I have never received a call for an alligator but no doubt, my colleagues in …

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    Panhandle Outdoors Water School – St. Joseph Bay

    Our first POL program will happen this week – August 17 – at the Navarre Beach snorkel reef, and is sold out!  We are glad you all are interested in these programs.   Well!  We have another one for you.  The Natural Resource Extension Agents from UF IFAS Extension will be holding a two-day water school at …

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    The Cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus)

    Also known as the Water Moccasin, this is a snake that is all too familiar with most Floridians… Or is it? Several non-venomous water snakes are often confused with the cottonmouth and are thus killed.  That said, cottonmouths are common in the state near areas of water and many residents do have encounters with them. …

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    The Summer of Sharks

    I am calling this “Summer of Sharks” as if this summer is more of a problem than others are. In fact, it is not… no more, so than any other summer –so we could call any summer the “summer of sharks”.   “Shark Fever” is more correlated with when and how the press covers the …

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    Ecotourism in Northwest Florida

    What do you imagine when the word “ecotourism” comes to mind? I know  I usually daydream about a trip my husband I took to Costa Rica several years ago, surrounded by lush tropical rainforests as we ziplined through the canopy. I might also think about visiting a National Park, following a neatly maintained trail and stopping …

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