Urban Wildlife

Bears’ Appetites Soar in Fall, so Stash Your Garbage

Bears’ Appetites Soar in Fall, so Stash Your Garbage

Florida black bears turn into eating machines this time of year, stuffing their stomachs in preparation for winter. For gluttonous bears, raiding a garbage can may be more appealing than foraging in the woods. To reduce human-bear conflicts during the surge of bear activity in late summer and fall, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) urges people to keep food sources around their homes and businesses secure from bears.

Gopher Madness

Gopher Madness

Florida is Famous for many  things.

There is one unusual thing that brings people to Florida and that is the REPTILES!

Most people see the reptiles that are native to Florida in Zoo's and Animal Farms, but there is that rare occasion where you catch them in their natural habitat.

One native Florida reptile has been catching my attention in it's natural habitat more than any other in particular this spring and summer.

The Florida Gopher Tortoise

Gopher Tortoises are hard to spot in their natural habitat because they dig deep, long burrows in the ground in the dunes and forrest.

A Gopher Tortoise can easily be identified by it's appearance. They have large heads, long front legs with big claws for burrowing, and their skin can range in color from light grey to dark brown. Their back legs are shorter but also have large sharp claws. Their shell can be up to 12 inches tall and 14-15 inches long.

Storm May Toss Sea Turtles Ashore; How to Help

Storm May Toss Sea Turtles Ashore; How to Help

As waves from Hurricane Irene pound sandy Atlantic beaches along Florida’s east coast, they bring more than debris to shore. Small sea turtles carried from their offshore homes of floating seaweed can be cast up on the beach by the waves.


Green, leatherback, hawksbill and Kemp’s ridley turtles are federally endangered species, and the loggerhead turtle is a federally threatened species. As a result, people wanting to help these creatures should be aware of some requirements so they don’t find themselves on the wrong side of the law.


The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) does not recommend going to the beach specifically to search for and rescue stranded sea turtles. However if you are on the beach and see a small sea turtle onshore that is obviously stranded and not attempting to move into the waves, please be aware of the following:

Residents in the Path of Hurricane Irene Urged to Take Pets with Them If Evacuating

Residents in the Path of Hurricane Irene Urged to Take Pets with Them If Evacuating

 

The Humane Society of the United States reminds residents in the path of Hurricane Irene to take their pets with them if they evacuate. Hurricane Irene is currently in the Atlantic Ocean, and is expected to make landfall somewhere along the outer banks of North Carolina late Friday or early Saturday. Irene could hit the U.S. coast as a category two or higher hurricane, with the potential of causing severe wind damage and flooding in areas of Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina and areas of Virginia.

Wednesday's BIG Catch

Wednesday's BIG Catch

In Florida we share our waters with and interesting and intimidating reptile, the Florida Alligator.

While most people would steer clear of a swamp monster this size, a group of local trappers were proud of today's catch.

Alligator hunting is permitted in Florida, but under strict guidelines. A "Limited Entry Permit" is required, and there is a lot of red tape to cut through to get one, if you are even lucky enough to receive one.

There are also strict rules and guidelines to abide by as well. All of this information can be found at :

http://myfwc.com/media/1456328/2011-2012-Hunting-Regulations.pdf

It is not everyday you come across a catch like this, or the chance to take an up close look at such and interesting creature.

St. Johns County Pet Center to be Closed on Friday, August 26th

St. Johns County Pet Center to be Closed on Friday, August 26th

The St. Johns County Pet Center will be closed on Friday, August 26th for routine maintenance and in-service staff training. Normal operations will resume at 9:00 am on Saturday, August 27th.