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Sea Grant Notes – June 26, 2020

Extension offices across the district are now slowly opening on a limited basis.  Some essential programs are being provided with limited attendance and social distancing.  It is still best to contact us by phone or email. 

 

Water Quality Updates 

 

Health Advisories

  • Jun 22 – Bayou Chico, Bayou Grande, Bayou Texar, Big Lagoon SP, Johnson’s Beach, Perdido Key SP and Sanders Beach (all GOOD)
  • Jun 23 – Casino Beach (MODERATE) – Park East, Park West, Quietwater Beach, Opal Beach, Ft. Pickens (all GOOD)
  • See all data below

Rainfall  

  • Rainfall collected weekly from East Hill (UF IFAS)
  • Jan (4.0) Feb (2.8) Mar (0.6) – Winter (7.4”)
  • Apr (3.2) May (1.6) Jun (6.5) – Spring (11.3”)

Salinity

  • The objective to see who has a MEAN salinity at or greater than 20‰ for restoration purposes.
  • 2020 1st Quarter Results
  • > 20‰: Bayou Grande, Big Lagoon, Lower Perdido Bay, Old River
  • < 20‰ at this time: Kees Bayou, Little Sabine

Longnose Killifish Monitoring

  • Longnose killifish (Fundulus similis) is being used as an indicator of freshwater tributaries.
  • Project on hold due to COVID-19

Red Tide & Harmful Algal Blooms

  • Last report for RED TIDE was posted Jun 19 (FWC)
  • Panhandlenot detected   
  • SW Florida – background concentrations in Sarasota County
  • East Coast of FL – not detected
  • HABs not detected in panhandle this week

Fish Kills

 

Marine Science Academy – Washington High School – Fish & Water Quality Data – updated

http://whs-ecsd-fl.schoolloop.com/MarineScienceAcademy.

 

Habitat Restoration Updates

 

  • Living Shorelines
  • – We are not currently working on any projects; IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN A LIVING SHORELINE – CONTACT US
  • Seagrass Monitoring
  • – We have begun monitoring in Big Lagoon. A few stations do need volunteers.  Some stations will require a boat to access.  If interested – contact me.
  • Mangrove Surveys
  • – We are ready to begin surveying for mangroves in the bay area. Paddle craft needed for this, paddleboard works best.  If interested – contact me.
  • OCEAN HOUR – Marine Debris RemovalSaturday June 27
  • – Meet at 8:45 AM; clean ups are from 9:00 – 10:00 AM
  • – Dog Park West – 1481 Ft. Pickens Road – Pensacola Beach

 

Wildlife Monitoring Updates

 

  • Terrapin Surveys – ongoing until Sep 30 – if interested contact me
  • Horseshoe Crabs – ongoing in June – contact me for best dates and times to search
  • Barrier Island Cottonmouth Survey – ongoing until Sep 30 – update report in fall
  • The Great Scallop Search – WE ARE PLANNING FOR THIS NOW – STAY TUNED
  • The Great Scavenger Hunt – planned for week of Sep 13-19; one on Perdido Key, one on Pensacola Beach – stay tuned
  • Manatee Watch – 1 manatee reported in Big Lagoon this week.  19 reports since Jan 1
  • – PLEASE CONTACT ME WITH SIGHTINGS (roc1@ufl.edu)
  • IT IS BIRD NESTING SEASON ON OUR BARRIER ISLANDS – please slow down

 

Invasive Species Updates

 

  • Weed Wrangles – ON HOLD FOR NOW
  • Lionfish
  • 2020 Emerald Coast Open – Sep 11-13 in Destin
  • Inshore Lionfish Surveys – on hold – IF YOU SEE ANY LIONFISH NEARSHORE OR IN THE BAY, PLEASE CONTACT ME
  • The Great Scavenger Hunt – scheduled for the week of Sep 13-19; one on Perdido Key, one on Pensacola Beach

 

 

Seafood in Peak Season for July

  • Rolling out of peak season
  • – Softshell blue crab
  • – Mahi-Mahi
  • In peak season
  • – Crawfish
  • – Brown shrimp (bay shrimp)
  • – Pink shrimp
  • – Rock shrimp
  • – White shrimp (Gulf shrimp)
  • – Snapper – check state limits and accessibility; change frequently
  • – Yellowfin tuna
  • Beginning peak season
  • – Flounder
  • – King Mackerel – children, pregnant women should only consume one serving a week
  • Seafood Safety Guidelines – Escambia County Division of Marine Resources – https://www.myescambia.com/our-services/natural-resources-management/marine-resources/seafood-safety.

 

Upcoming Programs

 

BITE SIZED SCIENCE WEBINARS

Florida Sea Grant is presenting short webinars are a variety of marine science related topics.

We will be going to a Tuesday-Thursday schedule for June and July.  3:00 PM CDT.  Registration link http://bit.ly/bite-sizedscience

 

NEXT WEEK

Tue (Jun 30)     Red Tides – More Than You Think – Capt. Betty Staugler

Thu (Jul 2)        Marine Careers – Victor Blanco

 

SEAFOOD @ YOUR FINGERTIPS

Live broadcast of local seafood items and how to prepare them.  The presentations will include cooking!

Each Wednesday – 5:00 PM – http://www.flseagrant.org/seafood/seafoodatyourfingertips/

This Week:   Grilled Whole Fish    

 

SEA GRANT OIL SPILL TEAM WEBINARS

 

The role of oysters in our estuarine ecosystem and the threats facing them— now on June 26, 2020, at 10:30 am CST/11:30 EST—https://gulfseagrant.org/oilspilloutreach/presentations/oysters-adapting-to-a-changing-gulf/

Breaking it down: Oil in the environment—July 14, 2-3:30 pm CST/3-4:30 EST— https://gulfseagrant.org/oilspilloutreach/presentations/breaking-it-down-oil-in-the-environment/

Every snow often oil, microbes, and sediment get together and sink, a seminar on marine snow—July 22, 1-2:30 pm CST/2-3:30 EST. https://gulfseagrant.org/every-snow-often-oil-microbes-and-sediment-get-together-and-sink/

 

Current Articles

 

Weekly “What is it?” – Mimosa     

Carrie Stevenson

https://blogs.ifas.ufl.edu/escambiaco/category/natural-resources/.

 

Embrace the Gulf 2020 – The Bivalves   

Continuing this series about the natural and cultural history of “The Pond”

https://blogs.ifas.ufl.edu/escambiaco/category/natural-resources/.

 

2020 Year of the Turtle – The Florida Red-Bellied

Continuing this series on Florida turtle.

https://blogs.ifas.ufl.edu/escambiaco/category/natural-resources/.

http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/nat/.

 

How are the Nutrients in Our Bay?  

Discussion of Lakewatch volunteer nutrient data in lower Pensacola and Perdido Bays.

https://blogs.ifas.ufl.edu/escambiaco/category/natural-resources/.

 

 

HEALTH ADVISORY DATA

Enterococcus bacteria count rubric for health advisories (Florida Department of Health)

 

GOOD             0-35 colonies/100ml of sample

MODERATE    36-70 colonies/100ml

POOR              71> colonies/100ml

 

Health Advisory Frequency

Data provided by the Florida Department of Health’s Healthy Beaches Program

Body of Water # of samples collected # of POOR reports # of advisories issued % frequency of advisories
Bayou Texar 21 7 7 .33
Sanders Beach 18 3 0 .00
Bayou Chico 13 2 2 .15
Bayou Grande 12 3 3 .25
Big Lagoon SP 10 1 0 .00
Perdido Key SP 12 0 0 .00
Casino Beach 11 0 0 .00
Park East 11 1 0 .00
Park West 11 0 0 .00
Quietwater Beach 11 0 0 .00
Ft. Pickens 3 0 0 .00
Opal Beach 3 0 0 .00

 

 

Fish Kill Data provided by FWC (Escambia and Santa Rosa counties)

Month # of Fish Kills reported # of Dead Fish reported Cause
Jan 0 0  
Feb 0 0  
Mar 0 0  
Apr 0 0  
May 0 0  
Jun 0 0