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.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

American Littoral Society Year End Appeal

HELP US CARE FOR THE COAST IN 2013
American Littoral Society Year End Appeal 
Volunteers moving oyster spat on shell
Volunteers restore oyster reefs in Delaware Bay
 

I wish I could open with my usual "Greetings from Sandy Hook" but Hurricane Sandy has displaced us from our office for the next several months. Sandy also severely damaged our Jamaica Bay office. Even so, we have been at the forefront of the public conversation about how, what, and where we should rebuild after Sandy. This includes working to ensure that protection and restoration of coastal wildlife and habitat and the public's right to access the coast are recovery priorities.


We were asked by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to conduct a "rapid assessment of impacts" to coastal habitats from Delaware Bay to Long Island Sound. We interviewed over 100 environmental professionals, refuge managers and others to get a sense of the damage. We rounded out the picture by working with Rutgers University to use remote sensing technology to assess the changes in beaches, dunes and salt marshes to better understand the implications for our coastal wildlife.

Once completed, we brought our findings to Congress, the administration, and state governments and advocated for funding to restore habitat, repair parks and refuges and bring more resiliency to our communities as they rebuild. And we got results! The President's emergency funding request to Congress included millions for environmental protection efforts. Now, we are working to educate Congress about the importance of that funding, urging them to make it available to help coastal wildlife and communities as soon as possible.

In spite of the storm, 2012 has been rewarding, challenging, and exceptional in so many ways. In New York, New Jersey, and Florida we have engaged thousands of people in  

* Removing thousands of pounds of debris from coastal areas
* Restoring thousands of oysters to Delaware and Barnegat Bay
* Replacing invasive plants with native species in Sarasota Bay's coastal habitats 
* Becoming better coastal stewards through NJ SpillSpotters and NYC Youth Conservation Corps
* Fighting off bad development projects and attacks on important environmental protections
* After school programs, camps, field trips, kayak trips, eco-cruises and fishing clinics
* Tagging thousands of fish to gather much needed conservation data
* Preserving hundreds of acres of prime habitat along the Delaware Bayshore

For all of these reasons, I'm asking you to help us to stay the course, recover from Hurricane Sandy, and make 2013 a year to remember by giving as generously as you are able to this year-end appeal. The Society's trustees, staff, and I congratulate you on our sharede successes and urge you to continue in our fight to protect and preserve the beauty and bounty of our coast for our generation and those to come. 

Sincerely,
Tim Dillingham
Tim Dillingham
Executive Director

Wood storks no longer endangered, federal wildlife managers say

http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/12/18/3147901/wood-storks-no-longer-endangered.html
- Miami Herald

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Sarasota Bay Watch continues to be the leader in scallop restoration in Sarasota Bay.

 
Releases To Date 
December 2011 - 4 million
November 10, 2012, - 4 million
November 21, 2012, - 1 million (paid for by a group of local business interests, led by Ed Chiles of the ChilesGroup)
November 13, 2012 - 3 million (paid for by SBE
P)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Bud Doyle's Beach Walks

Join Bud for free beach walks at Casperson Beach and Venice Beach

The second Tuesday of each month we will be at Caspersen Beach at the south end of Harbor Drive in Venice.  This is Sarasota County's "rural" beach.  We walk down the beach and return on a trail that winds through the coastal forest behind the beach.  Along the way we beach comb, talk about the Gulf of Mexico, and look at various birds, shells, and plants. 
 
The second Thursday of each month we will be at North Jetty Beach Park at the south end of Casey Key Rd.  This.is one of Florida's great shelling beaches.  We will walk along the beach, Venice Inlet's North Jetty, the Inlet, and the mangroves on the shoreline of Lyon's Bay.


Bud Doyle's Guided Beach Walk Schedule for 2012/2013
(walks are held at Caspersen Beach and North Jetty Beach
Park in the Venice, FL area)
12/11/12:  Caspersen Beach
12/13/12:  North Jetty Beach Park
1/08/13:    Caspersen Beach
1/10/13:    North Jetty Beach Park
2/12/13:    Caspersen Beach
2/14/13:    North Jetty Beach Park
3/12/13:    Caspersen Beach
3/14/13:    North Jetty Beach Park
4/09/13:    Caspersen Beach
4/11/13:    North Jetty Beach Park
The walks are free, open to the general public, are educational, and fun.  We begin at 9am and finish up at 11am.
For information, call Bud at 941 468-1849.

Dead dolphin found in Venice; fishing gear blamed

http://www.heraldtribune.com/article/20121211/ARTICLE/121219923/2416/NEWS?Title=Dead-dolphin-found-in-Venice-fishing-gear-blamed

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Friday, December 7, 2012

Sarasota's Christmas Boat Parad this weekend

Christmas Boat Parade of Lights: 6-8 p.m. Sat., Dec. 8; best spots for viewing are Marina Jack, Bayfront Park, Sarasota Bay

Friday, November 23, 2012

Fighting Corals

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UT1gWugdkfM
- YouTube
(Published on Mar 1, 2012 by

Quiet Water Kayak Trips - December 2012 - SW Florida

Quiet Water Kayak Trips
Call John at 941-966-7308 for reservations.

Enjoy leisurely paddling and observation at a variety of sites difficult to visit by any other means. Kayak, paddles, life vest, etc. supplied. If you haven’t used a kayak before, a short training session before the trip will get you going. Except for trips marked with an asterisk (*), members who bring their own kayak and life vests can participate for a $5 donation to the Society. Otherwise, cost is $20 for members, $25 for non-members unless noted. State parks require an additional entrance fee.


 Dec 1 Myakka State Park; 8:30 - 11:30am
 Dec 2 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Point Park; 9am - noon
 Dec 5 Robinson Preserve/Manatee Co; 10am - 2pm ($30mem/$35non-mem)
 Dec 9 Blackburn Point/Oscar Shcerer State Park; 10am - 1:30pm
*Dec 12 Myakka State Park; 8:30am-11:30am
 Dec 15 MYAKKA DAZE all day down the Myakka River ($50 includes kayak/$35 with own)
 Dec 19 South Lido/Bird Key; 10am - 1pm
*Dec 22 Myakka State Park; 9:30am - 12:30pm
 Dec 23 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Point Park; 9:30am - 12:30pm
*Dec 24 Myakka River State Park; 8:30 - 11:30am
 Dec 25 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Pt. Park; 10am - 1pm

Fighting Corals

Corals exemplify a common characteristic among animals -- they fight when confronted by "foreign" tissue.  Corals are composed of individual yet connected zooids basically constructed much like anemones.  Corals of different species will grow very close to one another in competition for space.  As they come into contact.  the bordering zooids of each species will attack one another.  One of the two colonies may overcome the other or it may result in a standoff where neither encroaches any further.  Their relative aggressiveness was determined by experiment in the laboratory but has not proved to be predictable in the field.

--David K. Bulloch,  "The American Littoral Society Handbook for the Marine Naturalist"
  Published 1991

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Stone Crab Revelry the Cortez way

http://ticketsarasota.com/2012-11-01/section/dining/stone-crab-revelry-the-cortez-way/
- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Paid mooring begins on Sarasota Bay

http://www.heraldtribune.com/article/20121101/ARTICLE/121109959/2416/NEWS?Title=Paid-mooring-begins-on-Sarasota-bayfront
- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Fiddler Crabs in Cortez, FL, shallows





Sarasota Bay Water Festival

Don't miss the regional Sarasota Bay Water Festival Saturday, November 17 at Ken Thompson Park in Sarasota. SBEP has completed the first phase of an economic valuation study of Sarasota Bay. The sixth annual Bay Wise Kayak Tour Program launches December 1 with ten free guided trips from December through April.
                                                                                       -- Sarasota Bay Estuary Program

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

An oyster in the storm

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/30/opinion/an-oyster-in-the-storm.html

- NY Times

Guided Beach Walks (October - April)

From mid October through April, our naturalist, Bud Doyle, conducts guided beach nature walks at Casperson Beach Park and North Jetty Beach Park. All beach nature walks begin at 9 am and conclude at 11 am. They are open to the general public and free of charge. Learn about the Gulf of Mexico, its tides, currents, and storms. Along the way, identify shells, sharks teeth,birds, fish, and plant life. Casperson Beach is Venice's rural beach while North Jetty Beach is one of Florida's great shelling beaches.

Upcoming Marine Life Explorations

Explore the sea life near our shores with American Littoral Society biologists.  Using hand and seine nets, we will be searching shallow waters and sea grass beds, observing, collecting, and discussing the natural history of some of the many interesting fishes and other animals that inhabit Sarasota Bay.  Trips run on Saturdays from 9:30 to 11:30 AM. Wading shoes suggested. Call  for reservations.  Call  Chuck at  941-488-8998

Sept 8- Lemon Bay Park
Oct 13- Lemon Bay Park
Dec 8-  Lemon Bay Park
Jan 12- Bird Key
Feb 9- Lemon Bay Park
Mar 9- Blackburn Point Park
Apr 13- Lemon Bay Park

Eco-Tour with Us Aboard the Carefree Learner (January - May)

Get hands-on fun and learn up close about the critters of the Bay with our expert naturalists and educators. Also see amazing nesting bird life. The boat is small and provides a great experience for students of all ages. The Carefree Learner are on Wednesdays at 1 to 3 pm departing from Bayfront Park next to Le Barge, near the Ringling circle. Trips will resume in January 2013.  We will begin taking reservations in December and will post contact information at that time.

Members $15, non-members $20, kids (12 and under) $10.


January 30
February 13 & 27
March 6, 20, 27
April 6*, 17, 24
*Note, our April 6 trip is the only Saturday trip

Quiet Water Kayak Trips, Oct-Dec 2012

Quiet Water Kayak Trips
Call John at 941-966-7308 for reservations.

Enjoy leisurely paddling and observation at a variety of sites difficult to visit by any other means. Kayak, paddles, life vest, etc. supplied. If you haven’t used a kayak before, a short training session before the trip will get you going. Except for trips marked with an asterisk (*), members who bring their own kayak and life vests can participate for a $5 donation to the Society. Otherwise, cost is $20 for members, $25 for non-members unless noted. State parks require an additional entrance fee.

Oct 25      Sunset/Moonlight Paddle   5:30 - 8:00 pm

 Nov 10    Myakka Daze - all day down the Myakka River $50 includes kayak - $35 if you have your own. call John for details.
 Nov 12 Myakka River State Park;  1 - 4 pm
 Nov 14 Nokomis Waterways; 1 - 4 pm
 Nov 17 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Pt; 9:30 am - 12:30 pm
*Nov 18 Myakka State Park; 8:30 - 11:30 am
 Nov 20 Caspersen/Lemon Bay; 10am - 1pm
 Nov 22 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Point Park; 9:30am - 12:30pm
 Nov 24 Little Manatee River; 10am - 2pm ($30mem/$35non-mem)
 Nov 25 South Lido Park/Bird Key; 9am - noon


 Dec 1 Myakka State Park; 8:30 - 11:30am
 Dec 2 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Point Park; 9am - noon
 Dec 5 Robinson Preserve/Manatee Co; 10am - 2pm ($30mem/$35non-mem)
 Dec 9 Blackburn Point/Oscar Shcerer State Park; 10am - 1:30pm
*Dec 12 Myakka State Park; 8:30am-11:30am
 Dec 15 MYAKKA DAZE all day down the Myakka River ($50 includes kayak/$35 with own)
 Dec 19 South Lido/Bird Key; 10am - 1pm
*Dec 22 Myakka State Park; 9:30am - 12:30pm
 Dec 23 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Point Park; 9:30am - 12:30pm
*Dec 24 Myakka River State Park; 8:30 - 11:30am
 Dec 25 Little Sarasota Bay/Palmer Pt. Park; 10am - 1pm

Sarasota Bay Watch Fundraiser

Sarasota Bay Watch

Harry's Continental Kitchens Wine Tasting Fundraiser
November 14, 2012, 4:30-6:30 P.M.
$20


     You are invited you to join us at Harry's Continental Kitchens for a lovely selection of wines from around the globe, scrumptious passed hors d’oeuvres, and live music.  The tasting will take place on the restaurant patio at 525 St Judes Drive on Longboat Key from 4:40 - 6:30.  A portion of the $20    admission (pay at the event) will benefit Sarasota Bay Watch efforts.

     Guests will receive a Harry's coupon and complimentary Go-vino wine glass.  Local art work, raffle items, and Sarasota Bay Watch merchandise will be available.  Still hungry?  The patio bistro menu offered and the restaurant will also be open with happy hour pricing and . For dinner reservations, call the restaurant at 941.383.0777.

Come to the island, relax with friends, and help
Sarasota Bay Watch so we can protect and restore our bay!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Just one of LOU NEWMAN's photos and his commentary


05_1094_LBK_4X6S.jpg
Hi!  My name is “Willie.”  I am a Least Tern so that is “Willie Least Tern” for your information.  The first image is a picture of me on the beach with my Mom; Well, actually I am just an egg in the picture :>)   It will be 21 days until I hatch.  Mom and Dad are one of 15 pairs of Least Terns in our “colony.”  We started out with 15 scrapes (nests), most of which contained two eggs.  Predators, mainly crows and ghost crabs, got the eggs in three of the scrapes.  The remaining dozen pairs of adults successfully hatched 21 chicks.  To say we were precocious at hatching is an understatement.  Mom and Dad were often at their wits end trying to keep track of us.  At first we would run back to the scrape or Mom would chase us and dig a new scrape so we could huddle under her, but as we became more venturesome they would simply come back with a fish and call and look for us until they found us.  Unfortunately, during the first few days we were very vulnerable to being seized by ghost crabs and gulls.  Some of my “classmates” ventured too close to nearby Black Skimmer scrapes and were driven off or killed by the skimmers.  Now that was scary.  Only ten of us made it to two weeks of age, but we grew fast and were flying by three weeks.  Although we were still being fed by our parents, at four weeks we were flying all over the beach and out over the water.  Learning to hover and dive for fish is next if we are to survive.  I am ready!
Images by Lou Newman, Sarasota, FL, USA.  May & June, 2012.
Web Site:  www.lounewmanphotography.com

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Bay Guardians to Plant Natives at North Lido Beach Park

Our group of student and adult volunteers will be planting native plants at North Lido Beach Park on Saturday, July 14. The group will include 20 middle school students from the Duke University Talent Identification Program, a marine biology summer camp focused on estuaries and marshes. Bay Guardian volunteers planted more than 2,000 plants last year at the same site.

The new tidal tributary at North Lido Beach Park was completed in March 2011. The restoration project improved 30 acres on the 70 acre site. The effort removed non-native vegetation, excavated the tidal wetland, contoured the upland area, created dunes, and planted thousands of native plants. The tidal wetland was created to provide essential habitat for estuarine dependent fish species. 

This is the fourth Bay Guardian outing for 2012. Prior volunteer projects occurred at Emerson Point Preserve in Manatee County, North Water Tower Park in Sarasota County and Quick Point Preserve on Longboat Key.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

SBEP OVERSEEING HABITAT RESTORATION AT FISH PRESERVE

SARASOTA, FL – The Sarasota Bay Estuary Program (SBEP) is continuing to do habitat restoration at FISH Preserve, a 100-acre parcel adjacent to Sarasota Bay within the Village of Cortez in Manatee County. The latest plan includes the removal of exotic plants later this fall followed by the conversion of two stormwater retention ponds into additional wetland habitat. New creeks, ponds and trails will also be created as part of the plan. The project is expected to take up to two years to complete. Dr. Jay Leverone, the SBEP Staff Scientist, will manage the project.

FISH is an acronym for Florida Institute for Saltwater Heritage, a non-profit organization that purchased the property in 1999 to help restore, conserve and protect the upland and wetland habitats and adjacent waters. The ongoing restoration at FISH Preserve is supported by major funding from the Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD).

The first phase of the large-scale restoration project was completed in 2009 and involved the removal of exotic vegetation, creation of a tidal wetland, and mangrove restoration. Last year, two bridges were constructed to connect hiking trails thanks to support from the Bonefish Grill. Volunteers with the SBEP Bay Guardians, including students from Martha B. King Middle School in Bradenton, have completed small projects that support the restoration plan.

The restoration will increase wetland acreage, improve tidal circulation, and reestablish natural water flow. Exotic Brazilian pepper and Australian pine trees that currently dominate the landscape will be cleared and replaced with native trees and shrubs. Trash piles will also be removed.

The Florida Department of Community Affairs designated Cortez a Waterfront Community in 1997. Since that time, the community has worked to preserve their community through policy change, land acquisition, the development of a maritime museum, and other projects. The creation of the FISH Preserve is a cornerstone of the longer term preservation plan.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

51st ANNUAL MEETING AMERICAN LITTORAL SOCIETY

51st ANNUAL MEETING
AMERICAN LITTORAL SOCIETY
Island Beach State Park, Seaside, New Jersey
September 20 - 23, 2012


     This 51st annual meeting of the Society will be held at Seaside Park, NJ, starting Thursday evening, September 20, and ending Sunday, September 23. As usual, the long weekend is an excuse to get out into littoral territory to see nature in action.

Where:
Headquarters will be at the Island Beach Motor Lodge, almost directly next to Island Beach State Park.
 
 
What:
A great deal of our time will be spent on Island Beach State Park exploring beach areas, trails on both the ocean and bay side, looking for migrating birds, shelling, and enjoying a kayak trip (must have kayaked before) along the bay side of the Park. Fishermen bring your rods, swimmers your bathing suits, and birders your binoculars. Trips will run from Friday a.m. through Saturday p.m., with breakfast on Sunday morning.

NOTE: The weekend is informal including dress.....Field trips go rain or shine.....  This area has no public transportation - try and carpool or join someone else going from your area. If you are willing to take another member let us know. Cost is based on double occupany.

Mail to: American Littoral Society, 18 Hartshorne Dr., Ste 1, Highlands, NJ 07732
If you do not plan on kayaking deduct $20 off the cost of the weekend.

Plan A: 3 nights at Island Beach Motor Lodge, all meals-- Fri a.m. to Sun a.m.:
$375 per adult - $150 per child under 12.   Total: $________________   Kayaking ___Yes ___No

Plan B: 2 nights at Island Beach Motor Lodge, all meals-Fri lunch to Sun a.m.:
$325 per adult - $135 per child under 12.   Total: $________________   Kayaking ___Yes ___No

Plan C: Commuters....everything except rooms, meals Fri a.m. to Sun a.m.:
$255 per adult - $150 per child under 12. Total: $________________   Kayaking ___Yes   ___No

Name:_________________________________

Address:________________________________________________

City:____________________, State___________ Zip________

Phone day_______________________________

Email:_____________________________________  

 Yes____   No____   Check to receive all information by email or enclose  a check for $_________ and a self-addressed, stamped envelope to mail confirmation, directions, and details if not using email. Questions: ask Pat - 732-291-0055 or pat@littoralsociety.org.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Bay Partners Grants

Sarasota Bay Estuary Program has awarded eight local organizations grants through its annual Bay Partners Grant Program. The local recipients include the City of Sarasota, Florida House, Founder’s Garden Club of Sarasota, Nature’s Academy, Sunbow Bay Condominium Association, Mote Marine Laboratory, Sarasota Bay Watch, and Keep Manatee Beautiful.

SBEP has awarded more than $213,000 to support 109 local grant requests since 2003. Recipients have included many area schools, non-profit organizations, condominium associations, and other groups. All of the grants have supported projects that focus on Bay Education, Bay Restoration or Bay-Friendly Landscaping.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Bay Friendly Suggestion from Sarasota Bay Estuary Program

"SBEP reminds residents to use fertilizers with slow-release nitrogen for their lawn or flower beds during the Spring season. Slow-release products feed your lawn and plants gradually and for a longer period of time. They ultimately help reduce the flow of fertilizer chemicals into Sarasota Bay as a result of stormwater runoff. Another important Bay-friendly suggestion is not fertilizing during the summer months from June through September. "

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Spring at South Lido

Spring is nesting season at South Lido.  Portions of the back beach are roped off
 Castles and multitudes of tourists appear at New Pass beach
Various vehicles park along the beach.


Sea Grape - Spring Colors

Manatee River @ Bradenton Downtown

Manatee Statue at Marina
Yachts at Bradenton Marina
Protest on bridge over Manatee River

Monday, March 12, 2012

Sarasota Bay Watch Upcoming Events

March
24th:  Second Annual Skiers Island Cleanup with Riverview High School National Honor Society.
27-28th Community Foundation's Giving Partner's Project.  A 36 hour challenge with matching funds!
April
TBD:  Second Scallop Larvae Release.  Funded by the 2011 Scallopalooza event, the release date is dependent upon scallop development.  Stay tuned for the announcement.
22nd:  Oscar Scherer Earth Day.  a one day festival with family activities, and exhibits.  Come by our booth!
 

May
12th: 4th Annual Sister Keys Cleanup.  A boating workday partnered by Town of Longboat Key and Mar Vista on our adopted island.
June
9th: Scallopalooza.  The Sarasota Yacht Club hosts this event that launched our scallop restoration project.  An fun evening of entertainment, presentations, silent auction, and food.
August
TBD: 5th Annual Scallop Search.  A terrific family activity that helps us monitor the local scallop populations.  Stay tuned for details.

Bay Guardians at Quick Point Preserve

The above photo was taken at a recent Saturday volunteer outing with the SBEP Bay Guardians at Quick Point Preserve on Longboat Key. Fifty-six student and adult volunteers helped remove invasive plants and debris before enjoying a picnic lunch. The photo shows students with Future Leaders Academy in Sarasota. Other participating groups included Martha B. King Middle School in Bradenton and the Mote Marine Laboratory High School Intern Program.

Bay Guardians do more than help complete projects that enhance our local preserves and Sarasota Bay. They also learn about local aquatic life, birds, habitat and the importance of conservation.

Waterway blacklist updated

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Craig Tucker's Snow Birds

 We call all our winter visitors to Florida, "SNOW BIRDS".
That includes white pelicans and other seasonal residents.

Photos by W. Craig Tucker

6 acres in Manatee on conservation land sale list

- Sarasota Herald Tribune

Friday, March 2, 2012

Bay-friendly landscaping.: Sunbow Bay Open House March 24

Sarasota Bay Estuary Program has supported the project with Bay Partners Grants in 2010 and 2011. SBEP also provided technical assistance along with Michelle Atkinson with the Florida Yards and Neighborhood Program and Jim Derwenko, a green-certified landscaper. The key contact person at Sunbow Bay is Denise Elliott and you can reach Ms. Elliott at dndelliott@gmail.com. Denise has provided timely leadership in making Bay-friendly landscaping a priority at Sunbow Bay.

 The public is invited to the open house and a local Girl Scout Troop from Bradenton will be on hand to sell water and lemonade to raise funds for a future camping trip. The Girl Scouts will also be visiting Sunbow Bay March 10 to do some volunteer work in the garden while learning more about Bay-friendly landscaping

Florida group rebuilds vital coral reefs

- CNN.com

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Civil War on Florida's Coasts: March 1, 1862

 March 1, 1862 - The Fernandina Fleet Moves South
http://civilwarflorida.blogspot.com/2012/03/march-1-1862-fernandina-fleet-moves.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CivilWarFlorida+%28Civil+War+Florida%29

CHECK OUT THE GREAT PROGRAMS AT WEEDON IN MARCH!

Weedon Island Preserve Cultural and Natural History Center
1800 Weedon Dr. NE, St. Petersburg, Fl. 33702

Register at least 24 hours prior by visiting www.weedonislandpreserve.org, and click on the “Events, Classes, & Hikes” button on the homepage.  Event information call (727) 453-6500. 

Discovery Reef Exhibit – Special Traveling Exhibit
March 1 – March 31, Thursday – Saturday, 9:00am – 4:00pm
For a limited engagement at Weedon Island, the Mote Marine Traveling Interactive Exhibit, Discovery Reef, promotes understanding of Florida’s coastal and marine environments.  Visitors will discover amazing life forms, survival strategies and relationships on Coral Reefs, and their crucial role in the ocean food web.  No pre-registration required.  Free

Salty Topics – Underwater Soundscapes of Coastal Florida
Thursday, March 1, 2012, 6:45pm – 8:00pm
This is the second in the 2012 Winter/Spring Marine Science Speaker series at the Weedon Island Preserve Cultural and Natural History Center. Many are unaware that the underwater environment can be very noisy and air-water interface is a difficult barrier for acoustic energy to overcome. Biological sources of sound production range from invertebrates to mammals, but the most prolific source is associated with courtship and spawning behaviors of fishes. Presented by James Locascio, Ph.D., currently a post-doctoral scholar at Mote Marine Laboratory.  Pre-registration required.  Free

Celebrate Coastal Archaeology
Saturday, March 3, 2012, 10:00am – 4:00pm
Excavation Tours: 11am & 2pm. Lecture: 1pm
Weedon Island Preserve is a significant archaeological heritage site on Florida’s Gulf Coast. Learn about current research in the Tampa Bay area with hands-on activities, professional talks and tours of an on-site excavation. See the new interactive, educational “Archaeo Cart” from Florida Public Archaeology Network and get on the road to discovery. Pre-registration required for excavation tours at 11am or 2pm.  Free

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

FISH Partnership Award

      Sarasota Bay Estuary Program received a FISH Partnership Award at the recent Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival. The award acknowledged SBEP for its ongoing support of the Florida Institute for Saltwater Heritage (FISH). Dianne Rosensweig with Scheda Ecological Associates was also honored with a FISH Partnership Award at the popular festival in Manatee County.

FISH is a non-profit organization that purchased a 95-acre parcel adjacent to Sarasota Bay within the Village of Cortez in 1999. Its mission is to help restore and protect the upland and wetland habitats and adjacent waters. SBEP is supporting the ongoing restoration at FISH Preserve.

The photo shows students from Martha B. King Middle School on a volunteer outing with the SBEP Bay Guardian volunteer program held in November. The next Bay Guardian event is set for March 10 at Quick Point Preserve on Longboat Key. 

Greta Man with Around the Bend Nature Tours pointing out various tree species to Bay Guardian volunteers at FISH Preserve. The Bay Guardians removed debris and invasive plants at the preserve in November 2011.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Sarasota Sailing Squadron

 Sarasota Sailing Squadron is located on Sarasota Bay at New Pass (north of downtown Lido Key).  It is dedicated to the promotion of recreational sailing, racing, cruising, sailing instruction, boating safety and youth sailing instruction.   See http://sarasotasailingsquadron.org/


Sunday, February 26, 2012

Amphipods

There are at least 50 species in Sarasota Bay.  Young differ from adults only in size, i.e. they have no free-living larval stages.  Most are herbivorous, living on macro algae.  Fish are a major predator.  These species are under an inch in length.  -- Dave Bulloch