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Tag Archives: wildlife

Fire… a Necessary Function of Nature

Mobile wildlife such as deer, bear and bobcat can flee a wildfire quickly. Nesting birds such as eagles, herons, egrets and storks could be more at risk. PHOTO BY BOB MCCONVILLE

As I watch the evening news, I see that another wildfire is burning out of control somewhere across the United States. Reports proclaim that it is 40% contained, and then 60% under control. Attention is drawn to the number of structures that are at risk, then saved, because of the quick action taken by mankind’s actions. It’s good that homes are spared Mother Nature’s wrath, but is this stoppage of a natural event what was intended overall? Here in South Florida, throughout the past few weeks, I’ve left my home in the morning and I can smell smoke in the ... Read More »

Briggs Boardwalk

Roughly midway on the trail, Briggs Boardwalk visitors  stop to look for water birds in the brackish marsh. PHOTOS BY JOAN AND CARL KELLY

By JOAN AND CARL KELLY Briggs Boardwalk, founded in 1960, is one of oldest trails in Collier County. It is located on Shell Island Road off Route 951, south of US 41, on the west side of the road. This walk is part of the Great Florida Birding Trail. It is a short, well defined, self-guiding trail with a diverse landscape. Starting off, you will walk through oak scrub, then pine flatwoods, a hammock and some fringe marsh. In the marsh look for the mosquito fish. About mid-way on the walk there is a roofed birding station overlooking a brackish ... Read More »

Move to Marco Didn’t Mean Leaving Winter Fun Behind for Skip Merriam

Even the spirits behind the counter can’t warm the bar made of ice. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

By Don Manley Skip Merriam left winter behind when he and his wife moved to Marco Island from New England. But the upstate New York native’s love of wintertime outdoor activities was too firmly ingrained to be discarded like a no longer needed goose down coat. That is why Merriam has travelled to the frozen North each year for the last 15 years, for group snowmobile trips lasting several days and covering hundreds of miles. His most recent trip, from February 5 through February 11, was to the wilds of northern Quebec, where he and nine other men rode the ... Read More »

Our SwampLife is Wild…

Barbara Johnson shows her appreciation for our wild life.

By Steve Gimmestad steve@coastalbreezenews.com Literally, just outside our doors is a world foreign to many; a vast wetlands we call the Everglades. Thanks to Bob McConville, this world becomes a little less unknown. Bob is a Master Naturalist and shared some insight with us on April 23rd at the Rose History Auditorium. Through pictures, stories and fun facts, Bob let us know quite a bit about the wildlife around us. The breadth of his knowledge is vast and there is so much to impart about his talk. We have limited space here so let’s explore just a few of these ... Read More »

Macro Photography Workshop

Mike Matthews. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

Submitted Marco Island Center for the Arts announced today its first special event with DPI-SIG. This special event will be a 3-hour macro presentation and workshop by Mike Matthews from 1 P.M. to 4 P.M. on May 16, 2015. The full program includes a 90 minute lecture, reception and a 90 minute hands-on macro workshop, photographing a variety of items for only $35. Lecture program alone includes a 90 minute lecture and reception followed by the opportunity to observe (not photograph) the macro workshop for $25. As an added bonus, door prizes from Hunt’s Photo and Video will be awarded. ... Read More »

Walking Collier: Serenity Walk Park

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By Joan and Carl Kelly Not far from Marco Island is a relatively new park, Serenity Walk Park. It is on 951 (Collier Blvd) only nine tenths of a mile north of Rattlesnake Hammock Rd on the west side of the road. It is a small park but very interesting. The mile long sand path winds around pine flatwoods and a cypress pine mixed forest. Some restoration was done to the land such as planting native grasses including Sara Cord grass, Love grass, soft rush, St. Johns Wart and lick wood. Coming around the first turn we found someone who ... Read More »

GOV. SCOTT: TAMIAMI TRAIL PROJECT WILL HELP MOVE WATER SOUTH

~DEP Issues Permit for Construction of Important Everglades Project~ Governor Scott today announced that the Florida Department of Environmental Protection recently issued a permit to the Department of Interior’s National Park Service, Everglades National Park, for the construction of 2.6 miles of bridging and road raising along the Tamiami Trail (U.S. 41) in Miami-Dade County. The project will deconstruct a section of the Tamiami Trail and replace it with a bridge so that water north of the road may flow into the Everglades, providing needed water to the Everglades National Park. This project will result in enhanced movement of water ... Read More »

Magic Under the Mangroves™ raises $1.3 million

Southwest Florida’s largest fundraiser supporting the region’s water, land and wildlife initiatives, the Conservancy of Southwest Florida’s annual Magic Under the Mangroves™ gala dinner and auction fundraiser raised $1.3 million to benefit the organization. More than 420 guests attended the March 5 event held on the grounds of the Conservancy Nature Center. Presented by Northern Trust, the Magic Under the Mangroves fundraiser is a key source of revenue for Conservancy of Southwest Florida. Since 2005, the event has raised nearly $7 million with all proceeds supporting the Conservancy mission to “protect our water, land, wildlife and future” in the region. ... Read More »

2015 Wildlife Photo Contest Focuses on SW Florida

photo-contest

By Coastal Breeze News Staff Click! Click! Click! Amateur photographers send your photos to enter the Eighth Annual City of Marco Island Wildlife Amateur Photo Contest. The contest runs now through April 24th with winners announced May 1st. This year, photos are eligible for the following combined categories: Land and Marine Animals, Insects and Plants an t na atr rs an anscapes. A winner will be chosen in each of the following sub-categories: Color, Black and White and Creatively Altered photos. Amateur photographers aged 14 and up, are eligible to enter. An amateur is n as an trar as not ... Read More »

Walking Collier

Freedom Park. photo by carl kelly

By Carl and Joan Kelly Freedom Park Preserve is impressive as a park located within an urban area that maintains a connection with and respect for the wildness of a local habitat.   The Freedom Park Preserve is located at 1515 Golden Gate Parkway near the intersection of Goodlette Road. It is also called Fred W. Coyle Park. Walking here you get diversity: a memorial, an urban park, and a fairly pristine cypress swamp all within shouting distance of Coastland Mall. First, there is the Freedom Memorial, a wall in the form of a waving American flag. It is only ... Read More »

“Discover Tigertail” – Delightful and Educational FOT Event

Dan Orfan - Egg Casings

Submitted Susan Kubat and Fran Huxley, co-chairs of “Discover Tigertail”, organized and executed a delightful and successful Friends of Tigertail Beach event on Saturday, February 21, 2015. “Discovery Tigertail” is a free family program that addresses the marine life and other wildlife that inhabit the Tigertail Beach lagoon. Specialists were from Rookery Bay, the Conservancy of Southwest Florida and the Marco Shell Club. Two hundred participants enjoyed the weather and the expertise of the naturalists manning the nine information stations: shells, egg casings, turtles, butterflies, plants, sharks, birds, seining and wildlife rehabilitation. Both adults and children participated in the scavenger ... Read More »

Conservancy of SW Florida’s Good Fortune II

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida offers daily boat rides about theGood Fortune II, a 33-passenger pontoon boat. The cruises depart from the Conservancy’s dock in Rookery Bay off Shell Island Road, south of Naples. SUBMITTED photo

Pontoon boat offers lunch and sunset cruises through Rookery Bay Submitted The Conservancy of Southwest Florida now offers cruises through Rookery Bay aboard the Good Fortune II, a 33-passenger pontoon boat. Leisurely Lunch and Classic Sunset Adventure Cruises are available daily, weather and tides permitting. The Leisurely Lunch Cruises runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and offers a relaxing, two-hour cruise through Rookery Bay, plus a one-hour stop for lunch on Isle of Capri. The Classic Sunset Adventure Cruises leave two hours before sunset and offer a spectacular view as hundreds of shorebirds roost for the evening in Rookery Bay’s mangrove islands. Passengers ... Read More »

Join Us for “Discover Tigertail”

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Submitted Friends of Tigertail Beach is hosting “Discover Tigertail”, February 21, 2015 from 9AM to noon. This is a free family program that addresses the marine life and other wildlife that inhabit the Tigertail Beach lagoon. There will be nine “information stations” spotted around the lagoon. Take part in seining for creatures from the lagoon or enjoy hands-on activities about loggerhead sea turtles, shore birds, sharks, butterflies, plants, seashells and more. Our specialists are from Rookery Bay, the Conservancy of Southwest Florida and the Marco Shell Club. Featured again this year, will be the very popular scavenger hunt, “Question Quest”, enjoyed ... Read More »

Eagles Draw Art Patrons

Twenty artists were selected and every piece was available for sale to support the goals of the Foundation.

By Steve Gimmestad steve@coastalbreezenews.com The streets of Marco Island were a little less crowded on Tuesday, February 10, and now we know why. The Marco Island Center for the Arts held its regular “Second Tuesday Reception” by hosting the opening of the Marco Eagle Sanctuary Foundation’s exhibit “Bald Eagle and Wildlife Art”. This was the highest attendance of all “Second Tuesday Receptions” at the Center and the exhibit was filled wall-to-wall with supporters of this worthy cause. Patrons lined up out the door to experience artist’s work of Bald Eagles and other protected wildlife to support the foundation’s efforts. “We ... Read More »

Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition and the bears of the Nature Coast

The Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition is traversing the state and is now in The Nature Coast are of Florida which stretches from Tampa to Tallahassee. For the most part, the area lives up to its moniker, with several large stretches already under protection as wildlife refuges and water management areas. Even with so much bear habitat left along the Nature Coast, the Florida Black Bear hasn’t recolonized much of the land. Bears in the “Chass” population appear to be restricted to public lands west of the town of Crystal River, at the very southern extreme of the Nature Coast. Fifteen years ... Read More »

Everglades Ultras race set for Feb. 21 in Fakahatchee

The fourth annual Everglades Ultras off-road-running race has been set for Saturday, February 21 in Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park.  Registration is now open for the event’s three distinct races of 25 kilometers, 50 kilometers and 50 miles.  The 50 mile and 50 kilometer races are the USA Track and Field – Florida Association state championships. This unique run through the Everglades has been cited by Trail Runner magazine as a “must do” race for 2015. “This is an amazing race venue,” says Race Director Bob Becker.  “Runners will experience all the varied environments in the Fakahatchee Preserve running on raised trails through cypress ... Read More »

Now at the Marco Island Historical Museum

Pirates say, ‘Arrrrrrrrrrr!’ SUBMITTED photoS

By Coastal Breeze News Staff History buffs are never at a loss when it comes to things to do and programs to see at the Marco Island Historical Museum (MIHM) and Rose History Auditorium. After his highly successful Jan. 13 program with John Ruthven, renowned wildlife artist and conservationist John Agnew has generously allowed his work to remain on display at MIHM until mid-February. Agnew’s career began in natural history museums and zoos where he designed amazing exhibits, produced illustrations, and painted murals and dioramas in the US and as far away as Moscow. His paintings now hang in collections ... Read More »

Prescribed Burns at Rookery Bay

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Resource management staff at Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve have released plans for their first prescribed burns in 2015. Weather permitting, Prescribed burns were in areas west of Tower Road and Barefoot Williams, south of the Treviso Bay area. Rookery Bay Reserve staff coordinate burns with the Florida Forestry Service and work with partnering land managers and local fire departments to get the job done safely and efficiently. Residents in the adjacent areas will see and possibly smell smoke from the fire. Fire personnel will contact visitors in the area to ensure their safety while traveling near activity areas and ... Read More »

PHOTO EXHIBIT REFLECTS ENVIRONMENTAL MISSION

The Friends of Rookery Bay and the United Arts Council of Collier County invite the public to attend the Ninth Annual Juried Photography Exhibition at Rookery Bay Reserve, debuting Jan. 29, 2015. The exhibition highlights works by 21 Florida artists and features a wildlife theme. The exhibit, on display through March 26 was selected by preeminent photographer Clyde Butcher who has wandered Florida and the country recording the last wild vestiges of America through his unique large-format camera techniques. An opening reception in the art gallery takes place from 5:30 – 7 p.m. Jan. 29 and includes wine and light hors d’oeuvres. Cash ... Read More »

Angling Styles

FISH

LADY ANGLERS Captain Mary A. Fink islandgirlscharters.com Although there are many different techniques used in the sport of fishing, there are generally only two types of angling styles or approaches to angling. The first approach is more proactive in nature, and the second is more reactive. The proactive angler is a hunter, constantly seeking signs of fish activity and active water. Other promising signs that proactive enthusiasts seek are areas holding structure, such as mangrove edges, oyster beds, dead branches, docks, wrecks and bridges, as well as emergent and submerged cover which is comprised of grasses and plant materials. Fish gravitate ... Read More »