If you’re familiar with the gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus) you’ve probably seen or heard about their characteristic burrows. Gopher tortoises dig their burrows in well-drained, sandy soils throughout the southeast. These burrows average 6 to 8 feet in… Read More
If you’ve ever encountered one of their characteristic burrows (perhaps, unfortunately, even in your yard), you may be familiar with the gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus). Gopher tortoises are the only tortoise found in the southeastern United States and… Read More
If you’ve ever gotten a vaccine, or perhaps you or someone you know has taken an insulin shot or has a pacemaker implanted, you may have to thank the horseshoe crab for saving your life. Horseshoe crab blood… Read More
There are indeed wild pigs in the Northeast Florida. Florida’s wild hogs are often referred to as feral hogs or swine and are of three general types. The first type is the free-ranging swine from domesticated stock, the second are the Eurasian… Read More
The Giant Cicada killer or giant ground hornet, Sphecious speciosus, is a common Florida species. This insect can grow to almost 2 inches long and easily one of the largest wasps found in Florida. Its striking black and yellow markings… Read More
This particular large caterpillar was new to me, so I called an entomologist at the University of Florida who identified it as the caterpillar of the Large Tolype moth. The two – three inch caterpillar you showed me… Read More
Q: I don’t see the small green lizards here anymore. I used to see them all the time when I moved here ten years ago. They seem to have been replaced by a brown variety. What happened?
A: Most likely what you are now seeing is the Cuban brown anole, Anolis sagrei. Apparently this lizard was first detected in 1887 in the Florida Keys but has become fully established within the last 10 years. An… Read More
Q: What kind of caterpillar is this? It looks similar to a monarch butterfly caterpillar but I know it is not.
A: Thank you for bringing in the caterpillar on a leafy twig so it has something to eat. The caterpillar is the larval stage of the black swallowtail butterfly. The colors on both caterpillars are white, yellow and… Read More
A: Since we were both standing outside and looking at the butterfly visiting the blackberry flowers at the Yulee Fruit Demonstration garden, it was easy to identify. The butterfly is called an American Painted Lady or American Lady,… Read More