The 20th Anniversary celebration of UF/IFAS Florida Master Naturalist Program (FMNP) marks an exciting milestone in the history of a program that has been copied throughout the nation. The 20th Anniversary Festival is a time to reflect upon what the program has meant to each of us, to join like-minded people, and to contribute in any way possible to the perpetuity of this UF/IFAS gem.
The Florida Master Naturalist Program’s mission is to promote awareness, understanding, and respect of Florida’s natural world among Florida’s citizens and visitors. FMNP Instructors teach participants about Florida’s environment using science-based information and interpretive techniques that prepare participants to share their knowledge with others by activities like a hike, paddle or meet at one of many areas part of the Florida Wildlife Corridor, that include designated trails by the Department of Environmental Protection agency. Florida Designated Paddling Trails has a plethora of places to check out for hiking. A birding walk in one of the Great Florida Birding Trails, a visit to one of the Audubon centers, or meet up to plant native wildflowers to observe native species. Meetup to discuss a Wildflower Resolution for your county is just a few activities that Florida Master Naturalists enjoy.
November 1 – 7 was designated a weeklong celebration combining online and in-person social events and activities. One activity enjoyed by (7) volunteers and (3) FMNP instructors at the Taylor County Hickory Mound Unit in the Big Bend Wildlife Management Area participated in a Clean -up walk about 1.5 miles, collecting trash along with the road and picnic areas. About 300 pounds of glass and plastic bottles, aluminum cans, cigarette butts, fishing lines, and plastic bags were gathered by the volunteers. During the walk, the group identified a diversity of plants, butterflies, and birds along the way. At end of the activity, the group shared a picnic lunch.
If you would like more information on the Florida Master Naturalist program or learn how to donate to the FMNP endowment go to FMNPcoordinator@gmail.com,