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Creature Feature: Gulf Sturgeon

Creature Feature: Gulf Sturgeon

A threatened species, the Gulf sturgeon is an ancient fish that grows up to eight feet long and weighs up to 300 pounds!
Nature at Home: Backyard Birdbaths

Nature at Home: Backyard Birdbaths

Water is an essential part of healthy wildlife habitats, including our gardens, yards and neighborhoods. When creating a backyard habitat it’s important to provide water along with food and cover. Many of us, while at home, have spent more time watching birds, planting native plants for food, maybe putting up bird feeders to provide an extra snack. Providing a birdbath brings even more birdwatching opportunities.
Creature Feature: River otters

Creature Feature: River otters

River otters seem to embody playfulness as they roll and chase and even wrestle each other in their aquatic habitats. Weighing between 11 and 30 pounds, otters have been in North America for almost two million years per fossil records.
Nature at Home: Thank a Native Bee

Nature at Home: Thank a Native Bee

We can thank pollinators for much of the food we eat. In fact, about 80% of our plants and crops are pollinated by insects. We know and love our butterflies and moths as pollinators and often help them by creating welcoming habitats in garden spaces large and small. Did you know that bees and wasps are much more efficient pollinators? They do much of the heavy lifting of pollinating plants, especially food crops.
Creature Feature: Marbled salamander

Creature Feature: Marbled salamander

One of our most beautiful amphibians, marbled salamanders live in North Florida and only grow to about four inches as adults. Their preferred habitats include damp woods and areas with soft, wet soil.
Nature at Home: Virtual Panther Scavenger Hunt

Nature at Home: Virtual Panther Scavenger Hunt

Florida Gulf Coast University's (FGCU) Wings of Hope Panther Posse program invites you and your whole family to participate in an online scavenger hunt!
Creature Feature: A Rare Bee

Creature Feature: A Rare Bee

Thought by many to be extinct, the Blue Calamintha bee, last sighted in 2016 at Archbold Biological Station near Lake Placid, Florida, has been rediscovered! Believed to be among the most geographically restricted bees in eastern North America, this species was only known to occur in four sites within a 16 square mile area of pine scrub habitat at Central Florida’s Lake Wales Ridge
Nature at Home: Making a home for a beautiful little bird!

Nature at Home: Making a home for a beautiful little bird!

Bluebirds, seven inches in length fully grown, have a blue back and head and yellow-brown and white chest and belly. They live in meadows, open woods, parklands, and even in neighborhoods with tall trees and some lawns with borders of large shrubs. They build nests in cavities such as holes in trees, fence posts or well-designed nest boxes where the female lays four to six pale blue eggs. When nesting, they become very territorial and are known to dive bomb cats to drive them away from the nest. Bluebirds thrive on a diet of caterpillars and insects and will also eat berries if available.
Creature Feature: Snakes Alive!

Creature Feature: Snakes Alive!

All of the below snakes are often vibrantly colored, and you should consider yourself lucky to find any one of them in your backyard or out on a trail. If you’re unsure of the identity of a snake, the best course of action is to leave it alone! Each snake plays an important role in our ecosystems here in Florida, so we must always refrain from killing native snakes, even if we think they might be venomous.
Nature at Home: Florida’s Native Habitats and Species

Nature at Home: Florida’s Native Habitats and Species

Wetlands provide many important functions. They store and filter our water, provide wildlife habitat and, in more urban places, provide needed greenspace. Whether you explore our wetlands from their edges or a boardwalk, during the humid summer or on dry, cool winter days, you will find that they host their own special community of plants and animals. Stan Rosenthal, Forest Advocate for the Florida Wildlife Federation, takes you on a tour to see some interesting plants that you might see in a forested wetland.