Basics of: Backyard Chickens

Want to learn the basics of backyard chickens?


Are you looking to venture out and raise a flock of your own chickens at home?

OR do you already own a flock and are looking to better understand them??..and no I’m NOT talking about talking to them! If you’re having egg, flock health, or production issues this program might help you solve them.

UF/IFAS Highlands Extension office is hosting a “Basics of: Backyard Chickens” workshop July 19, 2018!

The program will cover:

  • Nutrition
  • Health Management
  • Egg Production

We welcome people of ALL ages to come to this educational program.

Click here to register online.

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Posted: May 15, 2018


Category: Agriculture, Farm Management, Livestock, UF/IFAS Extension
Tags: HCLivestock, Highlands County


Comments:

David Austin

October 5, 2021

Hello Cris, You can stay in touch with my online programs in Highlands County on Facebook at Hometown Gardener. You also have a local Extension office in Hernando County. Bill Lester is the agent there and probably has classes. here is his email address. wlester@ufl.edu. Please keep reading my Blogs!

Cris
August 7, 2021

I am in Spring Hill and would like to know if have some classes near me , also what distance from the house should plant some fruit tree?

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Neem oil as a weekly preventative would be my first go to. If it is specifically caterpillars, then Bacillus thuringiensis preventively too (AKA BT, Dipel, or Thuricide) If you use them both you will stave off both issues. Make sure you are planting things the right time of year. If you are near Central Florida, I invite you to come to my vegetable gardening class. Below is the registration link. Thanks, David https://www.eventbrite.com/e/fall-vegetable-gardening-class-tickets-157244118391

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Keeping your plants evenly watered (not letting them dry out between waterings)is important as well as not over fertilizing them. Check the pH is proper (5.5-6.8) some people claim to put a tums in the ground next to them when planted. If the cultural practices are not right it may not matter how much fertilizer you use.

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Keeping your plants evenly watered (not letting them dry out between waterings)is important as well as not over fertilizing them. Check the pH is proper (5.5-6.8) some people claim to put a tums in the ground next to them when planted. If the cultural practices are not right it may not matter how much fertilizer you use.

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Yes it it! David

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Yes it it! David

David Austin

August 2, 2021

A lot of people claim they have seen them. You would think someone would have crossed them in captivity. David

David Austin

August 2, 2021

A lot of people claim they have seen them. You would think someone would have crossed them in captivity. David

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Jaguarundi are about that size range. If they are in Florida, I find it strange no one has caught them on a game cam. Which otherwise could explain it. Below is a link of google search. David https://www.google.com/search?q=jaguarundi&rlz=1C1GCEU_enUS948US948&oq=jaguarundi&aqs=chrome..69i57j46i433i512j0i512l8.5267j0j15&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Jaguarundi are about that size range. If they are in Florida, I find it strange no one has caught them on a game cam. Which otherwise could explain it. Below is a link of google search. David https://www.google.com/search?q=jaguarundi&rlz=1C1GCEU_enUS948US948&oq=jaguarundi&aqs=chrome..69i57j46i433i512j0i512l8.5267j0j15&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Hi Rudy, it is possible they had different fathers but also likely they just had different genetics. Kind of like a child having blue eyes while a siblings has brown eyes. The tail trait might be a recessive gene.

David Austin

August 2, 2021

Hi Rudy, it is possible they had different fathers but also likely they just had different genetics. Kind of like a child having blue eyes while a siblings has brown eyes. The tail trait might be a recessive gene.

David Austin

August 2, 2021

A lot of people are seeing cats they are not familiar with. Maybe a young Panther. David

David Austin

August 2, 2021

A lot of people are seeing cats they are not familiar with. Maybe a young Panther. David

David Austin

August 2, 2021

No telling what it was. I doubt it is something to worry about. David

Annette Brown
July 17, 2021

"The Highlands County Master Gardeners would like to invite you to a class on Saturday July 10th from 10 am until 12 pm. The class covers how to create a pollinator garden in your yard and what kinds of things you will be able to attract." This sounds amazing! Though, I would not have been able to attend, I would love the opportunity to view it after the fact, if it is available. Was the class recorded? If so, could it be rebroadcasted? I'd be willing to pay for it, just as those who attended in person did. This class sounds like it could be something I will really enjoy, especially since I have the beginnings of a pretty nice Butterfly/Bee garden and I want to add to it.

Sanitizer
July 1, 2021

very informatic.

Sanitizer
July 1, 2021

very informatic.

Sheila
June 8, 2021

Hi Henry, After reading your article about BER I know it is too late in the season to stop it. What product do you recommend for next year’s crop?

Bob Phillips
May 30, 2021

What is best way to control bugs. They literally devastated my garden two years in a row now. It is enough to make you give up. What do the commercial truck farmers use?

Richard Sanderlin
May 15, 2021

I saw one early this morning 5/15/21 in Keystone Heights, Florida. It was about twice the size of a domestic cat, taller and didn't run away immediately when I walked closer to get a view. It did take off when we were 150 feet apart.

Elaine
April 4, 2021

This morning I was walking my dog with a friend- ( on Orchid Island- Vero Beach)- we see bobcats occasionally-- Panthers very late evening ( after midnight)-- this was darker in color -- smaller than a panther-- larger than a bobcat-- 2 .5 ft. Tall-- 4.5 ft. Long with very long tall-- brownish ( darker than lion color). Had to be 80-95 pounds. My dog is 85 pounds. It had an easy gait. This was at 10:00AM.. it stayed close to the foliage. The rich golden brown color was not familiar. Should we be worried.

Rudy White
March 9, 2021

My brother-in-law found a litter of kittens, he talk two. One of the kittens had a short tail. The others did not could they have been two different daddies to the litter?

David Austin

March 5, 2021

Of course, at this point, it would be hard to say what you saw. I think 40 lbs would be a little large for a Florida Bobcat but judging in the open can be difficult. If Jaguarandis are around you think there would be the occasional roadkill. I have heard many people tell that they have seen them. Also with all of the game cams, they would be sure to show up. Could you have seen an otter? There are some instances of black bobcats. My friend has seen one several times near her house. I do not think bobcats and Jaguarandi can breed. Interesting story, Thanks, David

David Austin

March 5, 2021

Hi Renee, are you in Sebring? YOu can come to the Agriculture Center and we can help you get some Florida-Friendly ideas. David Austin

Renee
March 5, 2021

I want to plant FL friendly landscape on a tight budget, our front yard is weeds and is embarrassing and were on S. Egret on busy street facing east. I want people to see they can conserve water and have nice yard. We are in our 60s and have back issues that make it hard to do yard work. Thank you

John V
February 14, 2021

DeBary Florida 1 mile from the St. John River Did I see a Bobcat on 2/13/21?? Or is it this rarely seen Jaguarondis? I was driving on 17/92WoW going 50 MPH and I saw it run from the other side of the road. Had to cross 4 lanes with a center meridian. It was long and dark gray colored. Only about a mile from my house. It just ran across the road with reckless abandon. I am talking about 40 MPH because that is the only way it could of got pass that minivan in the left lane that was about 75 feet ahead of me. The driver never saw it until it was past it and into my lane. The driver hit the brake after it past by 10 feet or less in front of her. But this cat was lightning fast. About 7 or 8 years ago I saw a Bobcat in Dutchess County New York. (About 60-70 miles north of NY City) One was casually walking around a parking lot about 100 feet in front of me. They are more stocky in NY. Has a Bobbed tail. Longer back legs. The Bobcats in Florida are longer and this cat had the Florida Bobcat proportions. Except it was almost a black color. Seemed like a cross between the Florida Bobcat to me and the Jaguarondis. Because it was too sleek and long, too dark, and think it was closer to 30 or 40 pounds. (Based on my medium sized dog I used to own that was about 45 pounds) Yes, it was longer than the Florida Bobcat, and darker. So I am at a loss as to which species it was? Howabout a hybrid between a Jaguaradis and a Bobcat? Very possible. Interesting to note: that this was in an area near where they have been removing woods for developments they are building and we have seen other animals in this area not seen before like wild hogs and turkeys. A large area of habitat has been diminished.

Antranette Cooks
January 4, 2021

I'm in Palm Bay on the outskirts of town. I saw a very large cat today running full speed crossing my vehicle. It weighed at least 40lbs... muscular not too slender and was the fastest moving animal Ive seen in person. The color was light brown to gray... no spots. Although I was in my vehicle I was afraid

Josie Rushing
December 30, 2020

Hi David, Yesterday 12/29/20 a bit before 7am, my husband and I saw the largest black cat we had EVER seen walk across our patio, between our pool and lani. If I didn't know better since we live in Cape Coral, I'd swear it was a black panther type cat. This creature was between 30 and 40 lbs. height about 1 1/2 ft. with a long, sleek body and a long, long tail. Today, I found several foot prints and one very clearly marked. Took pictures with a penny, a quarter and a tape measure for scale. It measures about 3 inches across, 3 1/2 long. I've been all over the internet, found nothing even close, except a panther which makes no sense since I don't live anywhere near that type of habitat. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Mark Doescher
December 10, 2020

Dave, anecdotal, but there appeared to be significant bobcat/house cat crosses in the new Orleans east area. Webbed paws and much bigger than most house cats.

David Austin

November 25, 2020

This is the link to Dr. Klee's ordering page. https://hos.ifas.ufl.edu/public/kleeweb/newcultivars.html

Ken Barthelette
October 7, 2020

Hi, I was lucky enough to be assigned to Seminole State Forest for a year. I had 10,000 acres all to myself. What a great adventure. I saw the Jaguarondis on the property several times. In earlier times, the late 60s, I owned 5 acres near Brooksville and spotted Florida Panther there several times also. I now live in Missouri and sometimes enjoy The Bobcat sightings. What a great country.

Ken Barthelette
October 7, 2020

Hi, I was lucky enough to be assigned to Seminole State Forest for a year. I had 10,000 acres all to myself. What a great adventure. I saw the Jaguarondis on the property several times. In earlier times, the late 60s, I owned 5 acres near Brooksville and spotted Florida Panther there several times also. I now live in Missouri and sometimes enjoy The Bobcat sightings. What a great country.

Joanne M Keys
September 27, 2020

Thank you! Super helpful

Joanne M Keys
September 27, 2020

Thank you! Super helpful

Sinofresh
September 9, 2020

Thanks for sharing blog about Homemade Hand Sanitizer and Wipes.

Sinofresh
September 9, 2020

Thanks for sharing blog about Homemade Hand Sanitizer and Wipes.

SHALOM LICHTMANN
August 23, 2020

Please advise how to order your tasty tomato seeds via email. I did so last year but lost all info about it. I was very pleased and would like to repeat with a new order, how do I go about it and the repeat donation. Sincerely, Shalom Lichtmann shaloml@shaw.ca Tel: 604 535 9960 Shalom Lichtmann 219-1655 Martin Drive Surrey B.C. V4A 6E1 CANADA

David Austin

June 26, 2020

We are glad you liked it! David Austin

David Austin

June 26, 2020

It looks like an interesting site. Maybe I will find time to return and read some articles. Thanks for you interest. David Austin

suba suba
June 11, 2020

Wohh exactly what I was looking for, regards for posting.

anush
June 3, 2020

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David Austin

May 29, 2020

Hi Sonia, yes, Dune sunflowers are very easy to root. Pay special attention to taking the cuttings when they are turgid. Early morning before the sun hits them is best. Follow the other Easy tips also. Let me know how it works out for you. You can follow my Facebook page at Hometown Gardener.

Sonia Robinson
May 28, 2020

Is it possible to root beach sunflower and transplant a large one. It’s grown too big for the flower bed & love to move it. Thanks!

Taylor Davis

May 26, 2020

Hi Tonya, In Florida we have two types of Smutgrass: small smutgrass (Sporobolus indicus) and giant smutgrass, also known as West Indian dropseed (Sporobolus jacquemontii). Giant smutgrass had become the most common smutgrass species throughout central and south Florida, this includes Highlands County. This weed is highly invasive and is spreading rapidly due to the seedheads on each plant. It is ranked as a Category I Invasive Exotic plant species. While this weed is not toxic, I would not recommend trying to make brooms out of these weeds, as this would increase the spread. If anything, you should try to control your smutgrass to help stop the spread in your area. For more information, you can visit: https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/aa261 or http://bugwoodcloud.org/CDN/fleppc/plantlists/2019/2019_Plant_List_ABSOLUTE_FINAL.pdf

Tonya
May 22, 2020

Hello im in florida we have smuggrass here. Is it a toxic weed or just a nusiance. We have alot i thought maybe i could make brooms if they arent toxic. Could only find advice about spraying it i want to put it to use.

David Austin

May 13, 2020

Hello Henry. It is too late, in my estimation, to start tomatoes in Florida now. I would start them mid-August and they should be ready to fruit by October when the night temperatures are below 70 and cool enough for successful Pollination. Blossom End rot is really hard to reverse and pretty much impossible by this time of year. The tomato fruit that are just starting might be saved but I don't think it is worth your time. Thank you for reading my blogs. I hope you will follow me on Facebook too at Hometown Gardener.

David Austin

May 13, 2020

Hi Donna, What you probably saw was a breed of house cat called a Maine Coon. I have trapped one by my home and had it neutered. They get rather large. When you search them they will show photos of people holding huge ones. These may be photoshopped because I think 20 lbs would be a large one. No, I do not think any cat you come across in Florida would be dangerous unless it had rabies.

Donna Nicosia
May 13, 2020

last early evening I was watching an unusual cat... not the normal house cat. I got my binoculars out as it was walking in my yard not more than 10 - 20 feet away from me. I was in my lanai so I was able to see its face and markings very close up. After doing some searching on the internet I can say it looked exactly like the BWC Scottish wild cat. The only thing I need to know is if it is dangerous. It was very large and wouldn't want to come into its path.. much thanks for any info. Donna

Henry Carter
May 12, 2020

We haven't planted a large garden in years, and this year's garden is a newly-tilled area of the yard not previously used. We now have blossom end rot in our tomatoes. We are applying Rot Stop but I don't know if we will be able to save our crop. Is is too late to replant, will any treatment to increase the calcium content of the soil work in time, or are we done until next year? Thank you?

Taylor Davis

May 5, 2020

Hi Yvonne, yes the Crested Caracara is seen throughout our area. This species is mentioned in the previous post "Bird Watching Series: Birds of Prey", but could fall under "Raptors & Vultures" as well. It's great to hear from a fellow bird watcher, keep up the great work!

Yvonne Florian
May 1, 2020

Ms. Davis, You forgot to include the Crested Caracara. This is a Caribbean raptor sort of rare and new to Florida over the past ten years. I've seen one three times here and they are just awesome. Their call is almost a hoarse guffaw, like a laugh, and they have a colorful head crest and a wider beak than a hawk or eagle.

David Austin

April 14, 2020

Sorry I missed this. I don't always get these from my Blogs. A better contact is my email address. davidaustin@ufl.edu

David Austin

April 14, 2020

Possibly a male Panther. They may look dark under certain lighting.

David Austin

April 14, 2020

Maybe a young panther or an escaped Ocelot. They've only recently confirmed female Panthers North of the Caloosahatchee It would be rare to be a young panther.

Carol Weed
March 30, 2020

I may have listed my email incorrectly yesterday. I need someone to take a honey bee nest out of a soffit in an out building. We need to do repair work and the bees do not allow this. I would rather they are removed than killed but need for them to be gone!! My phone is (863)-385-2346.

David Austin

March 24, 2020

Hi Richard, I do not know of any Bobcat tracking programs, although I have heard they have done them in other states. It would not be too far fetched if the FWC had some type of program. My Father was a wildlife Biologist and spent years trapping and using radio telemetry on wild turkeys for the FWC. Bears and Panthers have been commonly tracked with collars in Florida. David Austin

Richard Steinfeld
March 24, 2020

I saw what looked like a Lynks or Bobcat w a tracking collar in my backyard. I live in Boca Raton.

Larry Binder
March 3, 2020

Wife and I saw a 2 to 2.5 feet tall dark cat, about 5 to 6 feet long with at least an 18 inch tail run across 19th Ave in Ruskin, east of I75, about 1:30 this afternoon. It was running from recently developing area south towards a conservation area that runs along the edge of Sun City Center. NOT a Bobcat.

Taylor Davis

February 25, 2020

You would need to contact Linda Conrad, the Highlands County Zoning Supervisor (863)-402-6638 for more information on locations in the county.

Mandi Foster
February 25, 2020

Are we allowed to own chickens in highlands county outside of city limits? I live in Sebring, but in county jurisdiction at the end of scenic highway just before the new panther parkway.

David Austin

January 23, 2020

Five foot is too small to be a full grown panther. A Young panther is a possibility. Under the right light conditions a bobcat could appear grey but the tail would be short.

Sebastian
January 23, 2020

Spotted a dark solid grey colored feline with long tail. 5 ft from nose to tail. Marjory Stoneman Douglas Preserve, Wellington, FL. Any idea?

Laura Smith
January 19, 2020

Spotted in Venice Isles Estates on Sat. Jan. 18th a very large spotted wild cat with a long tail during the daytime. Along the side of the drainage ditch Cervina Dr. N. Looked at us for several seconds before going into the brush. I would have said it was larger than twice the size of a house cat.

David Austin

December 26, 2019

It would be odd for a bobcat to come through a pet door. A photo of the track with a coin next to it for comparison would be a possible helpful to possibly ID.

David D
December 23, 2019

Just saw my first bobcat on the st. Augustine/Jacksonville line 10 minutes ago. It was exactly colored like the picture above. Twice as big at least as a house cat but the head was not that big. It was about to run in the road ahead of us and I yelled to my son to watch out and it slowed before turning back to the woods. Beautiful animal. Lived in all parts of Florida for 28 years and didn’t realize we had them.

Jackson
September 25, 2019

Thank you so much for the resources!

Julie Myers
September 9, 2019

Came here because there is a very large paw print on my patio table. Not a dog. Not a domestic cat. Must have come through the open pet door and jumped on dirty table then left.

Taylor Davis

August 22, 2019

Hi Alfred, Here is a PDF with the information: https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn%3Aaaid%3Ascds%3AUS%3A833c3fdb-8152-4b23-903b-54a94434072b

Alfred Moyo
August 16, 2019

Need a pdf document

Kathleen Barber
July 24, 2019

Interested

David Austin

June 24, 2019

Hi Melanie, there are a lot of weird reporting of strange animals. I suppose exotics can escape and roam the local woods. Someone near Naples also mentioned seeing a ring tailed cat-like animal. 30 years ago before everyone had a game camera it seemed a lot more possible that these animals were around. Now that digital cameras are catching images all over the state you would think these animals would be captured on film. As many people that describe Jaguaranda type cats we should be getting them on game cameras. Very odd indeed.

David Austin

June 24, 2019

Hi Lynne, I have a photo of a cat that fits the same type of description. According to most things I have read, bobcats should not be able to cross with domestic cats. I have heard others swear that they believed they did. I would love to see your photos. If you could email them to davidaustin@ufl.edu I will send the photo I took at my own home.

Lynne
June 23, 2019

I live in Palm Beach County and have been running a trail camera outside my gate at night. I've been seeing what is either a very tall stray tom cat (domestic feline) or a hybrid. It's hard to decipher his coloring in the IR light but I estimate him to be at least 12" at the shoulder, very slender with a long tail. His hind legs are much longer than the front. Can bobcats interbreed with domestic cats?

Melanie Miller
June 19, 2019

Could there be a ring tailed cat on Elgin South of Duke field. I saw a long tailed animal on the side of the highway about 5 years ago and try to spot it again whenever I drive through there. It had a body like I would think a lemur does. Then tonight I saw on a wildlife page that North American has something like a raccoon that got the discription!

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Hi Ron, Sorry I just saw this. Usually you can contact a local Beekeeper Association. Asking people on Facebook gets a lot of responses. I hope it worked out for you and the bees. David Austin

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Hi Tom, I don't know of one place you will find all of the answers. James Stephens's book Vegetable Gardening in Florida is a pretty good one. Here is the direct link into UF's Electronic Data Information Source. EDIS. Hopefully this is helpful.

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Hi Linda, I have not gotten into the habit of checking these emails. Hopefully I will do better in the future. I hope you found a home for the bees. If they are hanging in a ball (swarm),they will usually move along to their new location in a couple days without intervention. Thanks for your response. David Austin

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Punta Gorda seems to be a hot spot for sightings of strange cats.

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Could it have been a young panther? DAvid

David Austin

June 14, 2019

David, you are not the first I have heard these stories from. Many very compelling. With all of the Game Cams up you would think we would have a photo by now. David Austin

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Hi Mindy, They are not supposed to be able to cross. Curious to what you saw, though.

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Bob, I have no idea. Feral cats are not supposed to cross with bobcats although I know some people that claim they do. I got the attached photo off my porch. It could be a Manx cross but I found the long back leg to be more like a bobcats. Something to think about but no real proof of there existence. I will send the photo from a different account since I am not sure how to do it from this one. David Austin

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Hi Peter, Just finding these messages! Bobcats come in different color variations. I have a friend who spots a black one regularly. David Austin Hometown Gardener on Facebook

David Austin

June 14, 2019

Hi Staci, yes, it would be very unusual. There are not very many female Panther north of the Caloosahatchee river. Possibly a Young male panther that was lonely. The two cannot crossbreed together and both animals are generally loners unless mating. Mating happens over a short period and then they would both go their separate ways. Very unusual. You should carry your camera with you! Sincerely, David Austin Hometown Gardener on Facebook

Greg
June 5, 2019

My son and i were playing golf today in Carabelle. We were driving back to St. George about 5:30 pm and a large (twice the size of a house cat), long, and lean (but muscular) cat bounded across the road in front of us. It had a long tail and had a solid bronze short-haired coat. I looked at some pictures of jaguarondis after reading your blog and it looked pretty darn similar. I had to google it as soon as we got back to our beach house because it was so unusual. I honestly don’t believe it was a feral cat.

Steve Harris
April 19, 2019

I saw an extremely strange and exotic looking wild cat near Punta Gorda. I have seen wild cats in the northern climes, none of which looked like this short haired speed. Spotted cat that is thin with long legs and a small head.

Tom Sacher
April 3, 2019

David, I recently graduated from the Master Gardener program in Seminole County. I am overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of information on UF’s IFAS web site! I am particularly interested in vegetable gardening and I am looking for a single repository of information that would help me identify pests and diseases of vegetables we grow in Florida WITH photos to aid in identification. Any recommendations? Thanks in advance, Tom Sacher

Ron P
March 27, 2019

I have recently discovered 2 honey bee nests on my property. If you or someone might be interested in saving these bees you may contact me at my email address below. If no one responds I will probably be forced to exterminate them as someone might view them as a threat. That would be a small or maybe a large tragedy to me. Please contact me as soon as possible.

Aurora
March 23, 2019

Are these 2 and possibly 3 large cat predators the only ones? Or is there a possibility of other large cat predators? We live in a highly forested area, well it was. They keep clearing space for more and more unnecessary apartments, homes, stores, etc and I have seen large predators run by but have never been close enough (thank goodness) to identify. And it’s usually late and these animals are fast!! We have wild deer, rabbits, boar, large cats, etc and I’m just wondering what else there could be because like I said have seen other large, fast animals and just could not identify. We have a small/medium dog and my daughter takes him out and sometimes she takes him out super late and want to inform her on signs/animals/noises to look out for. Thank you!!

david Hamrick
March 15, 2019

I live outside of Tallahassee and I have seen a Jaugaronda three times in the last 20 years. The latest spotting was around 2 weeks ago.

Laurie Hurner
March 11, 2019

Great Article! Thanks for helping bring the livestock industry to a new group of folks!

Linda Duncan
March 11, 2019

We have suddenly acquired a queen bee and hundreds of honey bees that we don't want to kill but am not willing to pay $200 or more to have them removed. We are next to the wildlife preserve where they had a burn last week and the bees may have come from there. Will someone take them away or should we kill them, I really don't want to kill them.

Jen quinn
February 23, 2019

There’s is a bobcat carcass on side of ocoee-apopka Rd in Ocoee Fl 34761

Mindy Bickey
February 19, 2019

I was out watering a plant and low and behold a what looked like a mix of panther and bobcat ran about 50 ft in front of me and then a bobcat ran the other way also . Within minutes a rabbit ran out . I live in Punta Gorda in the country Area

Stacie Lee Novak
February 19, 2019

Is it common for a bobcat and panther to be "travelling" together? We've had several sightings of this unusual pairing recently near Shell Creek reservoir in Punta Gorda, Florida. Homesteads here are rural and 3-5 acres.

Bob Lavery
January 12, 2019

Bob Lavery i posted a comment last month which may have not been received, but I'd love to get your opinion on what appeared at twilight one evening to be a Bobcat in every respect (size, tawney color, distinctive Bobcat "face" and behavior), except for its long bushy tail with white rings at the end. We live in North Naples in a preserve/golf community east of I 75 that borders on woods and has plenty of rabbits. I've seen squirrels with similar tails but this creature was 2-3X the size. A panther doesn't fit either. I suppose a feral cat/mutant is a possibility. Thanks for your help.

Bob Lavery
December 25, 2018

I live on a golf course and nature preserve in North Naples. At dusk on Christmas Eve a tawny colored cat with characteristic bobcat ears and face (paler than the body in color), 2.5-3 feet in length cautiously stepped through the perimeter between my lanai screen and the bordering brush/woods stared at me as a cat would. At the end of its relatively long and bushy tail, it had several white rings at the end. I've looked over the images of bobcats and young panthers, but none seem right. Any ideas? A feral cross-bred cat? Thanks is advance.

David Austin

December 19, 2018

Sorry I am just seeing this. Meetings are 3rd Thursday of each month. 4509 Geoprge Blvd. Sebring. Ag civic Center, back side of the building in conference room 2. Tomorrow night is a potluck for our Christmas meeting. You are welcome to come and introduce yourselves. Optional $10 white elephant. My email is davidaustin@ufl.edu. The blog does not direct my messages to my email unfortunately.

David Austin

December 19, 2018

The description sounds correct but there is no real proof. Others have told about possible populations across the state but until one shows up as a roadkill or otherwise it would be hard to prove. Lots of people have game cams now but I have not seen any show up in photos either. Thanks for taking the time to read the article.

Morse Dempsey
November 30, 2018

I live in Niceville Florida on the eastern side of the Eglin golf course over the years there’s been spotting‘s of a large cat with a long tail that’s been bushy in a flat face the cats is dark in color. About one year ago three were spotted together .could this be the jaguaronda?

David Austin

October 25, 2018

Hi Barry, We are having a Class on vermiculture in Conference room two at 11 am. Here's the info on it. Worm Farming -- an environmentally friendly way to recycle kitchen and other organic wastes into top-notch fertilizer -- will be the focus starting at 11 a.m. Leading the free workshop will be Master Gardeners Peggy Davis and Judi Bentley. The workshop relates to a vendor booth, where equipment and instructions will be available for general information of purchase. I will add your address to our email list. David Austin

Barry Rehbein
October 25, 2018

David, I am a new and very small worm farmer/vermicomposter in Highlands County. I'm just getting my feet wet and learning how NOT to kill my worms and make creditable worm castings. What's on tap at the 2018 Garden Festival with regards to worm farming? Can I help with anything in that arena? Sincerely, Barry Rehbein

Jacqueline
September 14, 2018

A friend in California shared a Garden Treasure tomato with me. If I save the seeds to plant next spring, will the seeds be true Garden Treasure tomatoes? If not, where do I order seeds from? Thanks!

Ann BROOKS
September 11, 2018

Thanks David.... Good information and great photos!

Deniece E Mello
August 27, 2018

Hello, My husband and I are interested in the September Heartland Beekeepers meeting will be, day, time and location. We have been here in Spring Lake, Highlands county and haven't really seen any bees at all. A lot of fire ants and wasps but no bees.

Peter riley
August 17, 2018

We saw a gray colored “ bobcat” ilike cat tonight. I would say at least 12-14 lbs if not more based upon my cat who is thin and weighs about 6 lbs. he showed his face on Singer Island and took off after checking us out

David Austin

July 27, 2018

Hi Lorraine, this was in the spam folder. Larry Smith can help you get bees. He may even work with you on a box. Do you plan on working the bees? You will need a suit, smoker, hive tool at a minimum to start. The September Heartland Beekeepers meeting is about "Is beekeeping for you" It is free and a precursor to a class I will be giving this fall to teach backyard beekeepers the basics and hopefully finish off with them owning a hive.

David Austin

July 13, 2018

Yes Tom. There are over 300 native bees in Florida and Mason bees are included in that.

David Austin

May 3, 2018

Yes, We have over 300 native bees and Mason bees are part of those. They nest in 6" holes in wood so nesting boxes are fairly easy to make. this article shows some different bee houses. http://www.foxleas.com/make-a-bee-hotel.asp

tom simmons
May 3, 2018

will mason bees do well in Highlands county?

Lorraine Profeta
February 21, 2018

Can I buy a hive for my property locally? Or the box and stuff I will need? I will be living on my property by may or June. That is when I wish to start this.

David Austin

February 13, 2018

Hi James, I recommend one seed per container with tomatoes and other veggies. Maybe more seeds with herbs. Start them in the same light you plan to grow them in. Make sure you keep them moist. If growing inside for warmth make sure there is as much light as possible. a container 2 inches or less works best because you want the seedling to have a fairly developed root system when you transplant. usually at 4-6 weeks.

Jim Young
February 12, 2018

would like to know what is the best way to plant the seeds in small containers for transplanting later? How many seeds in one small container?

Laurie
January 16, 2018

Thank you Ashley! We are so excited to have you in the Highlands County office and i am thrilled that you have taught me about the PINK Resolution!

King
January 13, 2018

Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is a very well written article. I will make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post. I will definitely comeback.

Kimber Sarver
January 9, 2018

What a well-written article! It's amazing how easily we forget to care for ourselves. Thank you for your practical, yet authentic advice!

Sherlock izle
December 16, 2017

nice post

Sherlock izle
December 16, 2017

thanks

davidaustin

December 13, 2017

Yes, I will add you to our Newsletter list!

slimformx
December 11, 2017

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בנייה וקידום אתרים
December 10, 2017

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December 9, 2017

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Rob
November 11, 2017

It's going to be GREAT.....

davidaustin

October 31, 2017

Hi, I am just able to sign in here. You can get the tomato seeds from the following UF website. http://hos.ufl.edu/kleeweb/newcultivars.html

Lorinedees i
October 7, 2017

Would like to have some seeds of Garden Treasure for my mini garden.

Lorinedees@hotmail.com
October 7, 2017

Would like to have some of the Garden Treasure seeds for my mini garden.

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