This blog is dedicated to the environmental well-being of our Florida coastal habitat.

This blog is
dedicated to the environmental well-being of coastal habitat.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Small red tide outbreak causes concern

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Tulip Snail

In the shallow water at Island Park.
These beautiful, banded snails are usually covered with sludge, 
possibly as a camouflage tactic.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Perennial Grasswort

 These red flowers thrive on the salt flats of Robinson Preserve
(NW tip of Bradenton on Tampa Bay).
The grasswort is a creeping plant with the flowers on erect stems.

Red Tide reported near Manasota Beach

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Eagle and osprey nests

Eagle nests are usually larger than osprey nests and are built down lower on steadier branches.
The following link tells it all:
 Eagle nest
 Osprey nest
Photos by John Sarkozy

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Shark attack off Anna Maria Island

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

National Estuaries Day at Ken Thompson Park

Starring Karen Fraley
and cute kids and "hands-on" tulip snails
and more cute kids playing disc golf

 and preparing mangrove seedlings
and lots of exhibits

 and small reef balls
and lots more.  We'll try to post a few more photos later.
 Science Projects
Manta Ray Toss ??

Friday, September 23, 2011

Tampa Bay from Robinson Preserve

Somewhere in this photo, way, way out in the Bay or Gulf, there may be a crocodile !  One has been spotted in Tampa Bay area.  (None are in Robinson Preserve)
Crocodiles are salt water creatures, whereas, alligators live in fresh water. Occasionally, an alligator may get "flushed" down a river to the ocean.
The Sunshine State Parkway is on the upper right.

Rare American crocodile found in St. Petersburg

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

" Following is a croc seen on the north end of  Longboat last week and now reported in St Pete area."  - John Sarkozy

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


 John Sarkozy took these photos with a telephoto lens at the Apollo Beach Power Plant Manatee Viewing Center.  See:
  It's difficult to tell which manatee is the best looking, so all photos are posted.  

These gentle creatures come up close to boats and may have there backs scraped by boat propellers.  If you are kayaking near a pod, remember how large they are and try not to frighten them.  As always, do not feed wild animals.

Monday, September 19, 2011

National Estuaries Day Celebration

National Estuaries Day Celebration Set for September 24 at Ken Thompson Park; 
Sarasota Ski-A-Rees Water Ski Show Team to Perform

SARASOTA, FL – The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program (SBEP) and Around the Bend Nature Tours are hosting a National Estuaries Day celebration Saturday, September 24 at Ken Thompson Park near Mote Marine Laboratory. The theme of the free community event is Enjoy Sarasota Bay. Highlights include fun learning activities and exhibits for adults and children from 9am to 2pm and a performance by the Sarasota Ski-A-Rees Water Ski Show Team.

Visitors can also pick up a discount ticket at the event for admission to the popular Mote Aquarium. Around the Bend Nature Tours will provide dip nets to give visitors an up close encounter with aquatic life as well as guided tours on the boardwalk through the mangrove forest. Brad Tanner, the SBEP Bay Wise kayak tour guide and a staff member at Mote Marine, will provide a series of Paddling 101 courses for visitors interested in learning more about recreational paddling. Visitors can bring their own kayak and some extra kayaks will be available.

Bryan Moore, a professional disc golf player sponsored by Team Discraft, will provide free lessons and a putting clinic. Local artist Patti Cross and her daughter Amber will be available for face painting. A group of high school students with Mote’s High School Intern Program will present an aquatic version of bean bag toss.

Exhibitors include Mote Marine Laboratory, Island Style Water Sports, MarineMax, Sarasota Audubon, Florida Underwater Sports, Manatee County Natural Resources Department, Friends of Tampa Bay Wildlife, Florida Native Plant Society, Save our Seabirds, Sarasota County Extension, Mote Marine High School Intern Program, and Stow-it Fishing Line Bins. The SBEP Bay Guardian volunteers will also be on hand early in the morning to clean up the area as part of National Coastal Cleanup Day.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Sarasota Bay Watch - Monofilament Cleanup

Gulf loggerheads not endangered

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Wild Morning Glory on beach

The vines run all over the beach, so this plant is also called "railroad vine".
(We'll have to check the color of this flower.  Usually, the morning glory is more piink than bluish.)
Photo by John Sarkozy

Friday, September 16, 2011

Shrimp boats at Appalachicola

Photos by John Sarkozy

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Immature Night Heron

 Photos by John Sarkozy

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Casperson Ramp Construction

 New ramps and seats and walks at Caspersen Beach make a visit enjoyable for all.


Hunting for sharks' teeth at Caspersen Beach

Friday, September 9, 2011

St. Marks Lighthouse

 One of Florida's oldest lighthouses....the following link tells it all:
Photo by John Sarkozy

Casperson Beach Improvements

Lots of renovation work as well as new construction is going on at Casperson Beach south of Venice, FL.  More photos of the area will be posted in the near future.  (Double-click on the map to enlarge it.)     A Bayside pavillion  is being constructed at #5 and a Gulfside pavillion at #1.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

BP cleaning tar balls dumped by Lee on Alabama shore

- Naples News

Ibis with a dirty head

This ibis has been sticking his long beak in the mud at Ken Thompson Park.  He was looking for snails and whatever else lurks there.  We're not sure why the head is gray.  It's probably because the mud is under a foot or so of dirty water.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Carnival Cruise Liner on Tampa Bay

This photo of either the Carnival Inspiration or Paradise 
was taken from Apollo Beach Nature Park on Tampa Bay    
Don't call them boats.
The huge ships create a wake like none you've seen before
....short waves coming just a couple of feet apart.   
Be careful when kayaking near them. Meet the waves head on.

Sarasota City Pier (Sarasota History Alive)

- Sarasota History Alive  (

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Gov. Scott open to oil drilling in the Everglades
- Naples News

Gumbo Limbo

Called the "TOURIST TREE".   Here's why....
 Look at that "sunburn" and peeling skin.
This tree is fairly salt-tolerant and wind-tolerant and 
is recommended as a good, hurricane-resistant species.
Gumbo limbo ranges from Cape Canaveral to 
southern Florida, including the Keys.
 Photo by John Sarkozy

Monday, September 5, 2011

Hermit Crab in shell

Hermit crabs don't have their own shells, so they crawl into the shell of another animal..
As they grow, the crab has to find a larger shell.  
The crab above seems to have taken over an empty  shark's eye shell.

Photo by John Sarkozy

Trouble in Sea Bird Paradise

- Bradenton Herald

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Living Sanibel: The Black Skimmer

- Sanibel-Captiva Island Reporter

Yes, we have scorpions at Palmer Point

Palmer Point Beach
Palmer Point Beach begins at the southern tip of Siesta Key 
and continues onto the north end of Casey Key.
Photo by John Sarkozy

Holmes Beach Pier Replacement


Saturday, September 3, 2011

Bay Preserve at Osprey

Bay Preserve is a wonderful place to visit.  The property is on Sarasota Bay in Osprey, FL.  The easiest way to enter is at Spanish Pointe Park.  Just follow the road in and continue straight to the bay.

Walk out the dock to the Honore T. Wansler Wildlife Observation Platform.  Enjoy the view of Sarasota Bay.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Monarch butterfly during Fall migration

settles on wild rosemary.   We're guessing that this photo was taken in the Florida Panhandle in a coastal shrub habitat.  That is the normal  location for wild rosemary in Florida.
photo by John Sarkozy