Due to the COVID-19 virus, and SO many programs and projects on hold, we have changed the format for Sea Grant Notes to address what is going on.
All UF IFAS extension programs, meetings, site visits, and volunteer programs are suspended until MID-MAY.
BITE SIZED SCIENCE WEBINARS
Florida Sea Grant is presenting short webinars are a variety of marine science related topics.
They will be broadcast each day from now until May 29. 3:00 PM CDT. Registration link http://bit.ly/bite-sizedscience
TODAY – 3:00 PM
Aquaponics 101 – Dr. Laura Tiu
Mon Sea Turtles – Brittany Scharf
Tue Artificial Reef Monitoring – Victor Blanco
Wed Lionfish – Dr. Ana Zangroniz and Rick O’Connor
Thu Living Shorelines – Dr. Savanna Barry
Fri Sustainable Seafood – Armando Ubeba
MANATEE SIGHTINGS #3 and #4
We had two individual manatee reports. Not 100% sure they were the same animal. Apr 20 – NAS Pensacola. Apr 22 – Big Lagoon.
Again, please contact me if you see one. Thanks
NEW LIST PROVIDES ASSISTANCE OPTIONS FOR FLORIDA COASTAL BUSINESSES
Florida Sea Grant is maintaining a curated list of disaster assistance options for Florida’s coastal businesses disrupted by COVID-19.
The list contains links to details about well- and lesser-known options and includes “quick takeaway” overviews of each assistance program. Well-funded and widely available programs are prioritized on the list. The page also houses a collection of links to additional useful resources, including materials in Spanish.
“There is a lot of information floating around out there,” says Andrew Ropicki, Florida Sea Grant natural resources economist and one of the project leaders. “We are trying to provide a timely and accurate collection of resources that will be useful for Florida coastal businesses.”
Ropicki and others on the project team stress that the best place to start an application for disaster aid is to visit with your bank or lender and the Florida Small Business Development Center (SBDC). They also suggest contacting local representatives by telephone or email and not to just rely on internet-based applications.
The project team — which includes experts from Florida Sea Grant, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension, and the UF/IFAS Center for Public Issues Education — reviews the page regularly for accuracy and to include new options.
“[I] really appreciate the outstanding work that you and FSG have done on consolidating the various types of aid available to fishermen due to the virus,” said Bill Kelly, executive director of the Florida Keys Commercial Fishermen’s Association, in a recent email. “I’ve been searching for a comprehensive listing and you just provided it.”
YOUTH SCIENCE LESSONS
Will continue this week – Monday thru Thursday.
We have done Lessons 1-5 for invasive species, local wildlife, water, and backyard habitats
You will be able to find these on the Escambia County Extension Natural Resource Page
YOUTH SCIENCE LESSON FROM THE ROY HYATT ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER
Metamorphosis of the Insect!
Plants Are Alive!
In Search of A Carnivore!
Ant Mound Mystery!
Whooo Left That Behind? and What In the World Is It?
MORE YOUTH SCIENCE LESSONS:
The GoMRI consortia RECOVER (housed at University of Miami RSMAS) has created a great resource to help students/teachers learn more about how their lab group does oil spill experiments with fish. They do virtual experiments for all ages/grades. Please feel free to share with whomever you think would be interested.
ESCAMBIA COUNTY EXTENSION NATURAL RESOURCE BLOGS
Earth Day Heroes – Carrie Stevenson
Wildlife Sanctuary of Northwest Florida
Roy Hyatt Environmental Center
Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve
The Bream Fisherman’s Association
Weekly “What is it?” – Carrie Stevenson
2020 Year of the Turtle – chicken turtles – http://nwdistrict.ifas.ufl.edu/nat/2020/04/19/2020-year-of-the-turtle-chicken-turtles/.
2020 EMBRACE THE GULF – the jellyfish
2020 YEAR OF THE TURTLE – the chicken turtle
Pensacola-Perdido Bay Estuary Program
Is soliciting for an executive director.
The Executive Director position has been posted to the Escambia County Jobs website. It will close May 10th at 11:59 p.m.
UF IFAS Water Management Lunch & Learn Courses
The lunch and learn In-Service Training opportunity, Introduction to Water Resources Management in Florida has been updated to ensure the safety and security of these webinars. We have changed the Zoom link and are requiring registration for all webinars.
|Topic||Presenter||Date||Click Link to Register|
|TMDLs overview||Mary Lusk||3/17/20||Video recording here|
|BMAPs overview||Lisa Krimsky and Charles Barrett||4/28/20||Register here|
|BMAPs – Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4)||Eban Bean||5/19/20||Register here|
|BMAPs – On-site sewage systems||Andrea Albertin||6/16/20||Register here|
|BMAPs – Ag BMPs||Lakesh Sharma||7/14/20||Register here|
|Hydrology 101 and using the DBYHYDRO environmental dataset||Haimanote Bayabil||8/18/20||Register here|
FWC SPECIES CONSERVATION MEASURES AND PERMITTING GUIDLELINES
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is seeking input on draft Species Conservation Measures and Permitting Guidelines for eight species included in Florida’s Imperiled Species Management Plan. The draft Guidelines and more information can be found at: https://myfwc.com/wildlifehabitats/wildlife/species-guidelines.
Species Conservation Measures and Permitting Guidelines are intended to provide information on rule requirements as they relate to permitting. They also provide information on species range, survey methodology, and voluntary practices that can benefit the species.
The Commission is currently seeking public comments on draft Species Conservation Measures and Permitting Guidelines for the following species:
- Florida mouse
- Gopher frog
- Florida pine snake
- Mangrove rivulus
- Suwannee cooter
- Lower Keys populations of: red rat snake, striped mud turtle, peninsula ribbonsnake
- Florida pine snake (revision to current guidelines)
Webinars during the public comment period
Key information included in the Guidelines will be presented at two public webinars. The webinars also offer an opportunity to ask questions. Each webinar will offer the same information. Participation in the webinar will require access to a computer AND access to a telephone. Those that do not have computer access can listen in on the phone.
Information on how to join the webinars is available at:
Webinars are scheduled for the following dates:
- Friday, May 8th from 1:00pm to 3:00pm (ET)
- Monday, May 11th from 10:00am to 12:00pm (ET)
Home School Resources
THESE ARE PROVIDED COURTESY OF NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION
As schools are closing for several months, many parents are being precipitously thrust into the world of homeschooling.
I thought it might be helpful to review some of the leading online support systems, curricula sites etc. for homeschooling. If you are not trying to educate your own kids, you may know someone who could use such resources. There are hundreds of sites so this is not a comprehensive list. — These are some of the vetted homeschool sites that are more comprehensive, professional, fun and secular.
Starts out with informative videos to help you get started on your new homeschooling journey
Has lesson planning tools and comprehensive curricula including keeping up with standardized tests. Has resources for gifted learners, summers learning, student-pacing, tailored scheduling, and more.
Calvert Education: https://www.calverthomeschool.com/
Offers materials for sale and three months free service during pandemic. Offers comprehensive, media rich curricula -K-12 Language arts, math, etc. Has an online support system.
Thousands of educator-generated videos on everything from reading, math and science and applied skills including weather basics to raising chickens and the science behind it. Unusually fun for kids because it goes beyond standard curricula to life skills such as cooking, finances, study skills and more.
Gryphon House https://www.gryphonhouse.com/
Offers books for early childhood according to age – infants, toddlers, preschool and elementary — in content areas including literacy, science, music and more. Has support information in social science and educational management for parents and educators.
GR4K is a year-long learning-based program that families can do at home. GR4K will help you teach your child the skills needed to enter Kindergarten ready to succeed.
Turtle Trash Collectors
In response to the COVD-19 pandemic, UNCW MarineQuest is now offering FREE VIRTUAL Turtle Trash Collectors programs funded by the NOAA Marine Debris Program (https://uncw.edu/marinequest/2tc.html)!
This program is designed to educate youth about the impacts of marine debris and encourage behavior changes to reduce the generation of marine debris in the future.
Water Quality Updates
- WE FINALLY GOT SOME MORE RAIN!
- Rainfall collected weekly from East Hill (UF IFAS)
- 2019 rainfall total in East Hill was 47.5”. Rainfall for airport was similar.
- Jan (4.0) Feb (2.8) Mar (0.6) – Winter (7.4”)
- Apr (3.1)
- The objective of this citizen science project is to determine the mean/median/mode of salinity in local waterbodies for the purpose to assess the potential success of restoration projects: such as bay scallop and specific species of seagrasses. We are looking for a mean/median/mode of 20‰ or higher. We are hoping to get a minimum of 100 measurements from each location.
- 2020 1st Quarter Results
2019 – 2020
|Body of Water||No. of samples||Surface Mean||Surface Median||Surface Mode||Bottom Mean||Bottom Median||Bottom Mode|
|Big Lagoon||12 surface
|Lower Perdido Bay||46||16||15||20||16||16||20|
Longnose Killifish Monitoring
- ON HOLD UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
Red Tide & Harmful Algal Blooms
- Last report for RED TIDE was posted Apr 17 (FWC)
- Panhandle – not detected
- SW Florida – background concentrations in Pinellas County
- East Coast of FL – not detected
- HABs not detected this week
- No Fish Kills reported in Jan, Feb, Mar, or Apr
- Report fish kills to FWC at – https://myfwc.com/research/saltwater/health/fish-kills-hotline/.
Marine Science Academy – Washington High School – Fish & Water Quality Data – updated
- OCEAN HOUR HAS SUSPENDED ALL CLEAN UPS UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
- Living Shorelines – NO SITE VISITS UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
- Seagrass Monitoring – ON HOLD UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
- Mangrove Migration – ON HOLD UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
Wildlife & Fisheries Updates
- Panhandle Diamondback Terrapin Project – ON HOLD UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
- Horseshoe Crabs – ON HOLD UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
- Barrier Island Cottonmouth Survey – ON HOLD UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
- The Great Scallop Search – PLANNED FOR JUNE 13 – ON HOLD FOR NOW
- The Great Scavenger Hunt – PLANNED FOR SEP 12
- Manatee Watch – PLEASE CONTACT ME WITH SIGHTINGS (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- 2020 Gulf Red Snapper Season – June 11 – July 25
Invasive Species Updates
- Florida Invasive Species Awareness Week – May 18-22
This year UF IFAS Extension will be providing Facebook LIVE broadcast of how to identify and remove selected local invasive species.
Monday May 18 – Feral Hogs
Tuesday May 19 – Giant Salvinia
Wednesday May 20 – Congongrass
Thursday May 21 – Air Potato
Friday May 22 – Regal Demoiselle
- Beach Vitex – ALL SURVEYS AND WORKDAYS ON HOLD
- Invasive Lionfish
- – 2020 Emerald Coast Open – ON HOLD
- Inshore Surveys – ON HOLD
- Regal Demoiselle – Currently working on publications for this species; MORE SOON
- Brown (Cuban) Anole – REPORT TO EDDMAPS IF FOUND IN YARD
- Tropical Fish Species of Concern – Currently working on publication; MORE SOON.
- Local Seafood is here and available! Consider local seafood for your meal choices
- Here’s what’s in Peak Season for APRIL
- – Softshell Blue crab
- – Clams
- – IT’S CRAWFISH TIME
- – Oysters
- – Pompano
- – Pink Shrimp
- – Snapper – check state limits and accessibility; change frequently
- – Spanish Mackerel
- Seafood @ Your Fingertips – we will be offering this online in May – stay tune for dates and topics!
- Seafood Safety Guidelines – Escambia County Division of Marine Resources – https://www.myescambia.com/our-services/natural-resources-management/marine-resources/seafood-safety.
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|
|Big Lagoon SP||4||0||0||.00|
|Perdido Key SP||4||0||0||.00|
Fish Kill Data provided by FWC
|Month||# of Fish Kills reported||# of Dead Fish reported||Cause|