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April 11, 2019

snegnest2 250While Rookery Bay staff are very proud of the shorebirds that call reserve beaches their “winter getaway” or “permanent home,” we are equally proud of the wading birds that rely on the estuary for roosting or nesting. In fact, Rookery Bay Reserve has a deep history with wading birds and has been monitoring nesting wading birds near Marco Island since 1979. This colony, called the ABC Islands, and the dynamic nature of wading bird behavior, is what makes me love my job as an avian biologist. My favorite work in Rookery Bay Reserve is monitoring breeding wading birds and I always appreciate the opportunity to share my passion and knowledge of these birds.

least terns 16WHAT: Breakfast with the Birds Lecture Series
WHEN: May 23, June 27, July 23, Aug. 20
             9:30 - 10:30 a.m.
WHERE: Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center
              300 Tower Road
              Naples, FL 34113
HOW: Cost of $15 includes pastries, juice and coffee. Advance registration is required.

Book now

2019 posted areas2 250Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve provides important habitat for beach-nesting birds including least terns, black skimmers and Wilson's plover. Below is the list of areas that are closed this year in cooperation with Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission. All are considered "partial" closings with exception to Second Chance Critical Wildlife Area, which is completely closed to all landings. A "partial" closing involves shorebird signs tied together with string and flagging around an active nesting area. People may stand or walk outside of the signs but may not cross the string to prevent accidentally stepping on eggs or chicks. Even the experienced eye can miss hidden nests.

Sen. Rick Scott announces water policies 3.25.19 250Naples, FL – U.S. Senator Rick Scott hosted a roundtable meeting on Monday, March 25, 2019 to discuss Everglades restoration at Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Naples. Attendees included elected officials, representatives from Audubon Florida, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission, and other partners. Before the ensuing press conference, Reserve manager Keith Laakkonen, left, welcomed the crowd and introduced the senator, who renewed his commitment to preserving water quality and lauded the federal government for their willingness to allocate federal funding for construction projects such as the Hoover Dike.

WHAT: Lunch & Learn Lecture Series: Through the Eyes of a Filmmaker

WHEN: April 16, 2019, Noon to 1 p.m.

WHERE: Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center, 300 Tower Road, Naples, FL 34113

HOW: Cost is $15, which including lunch.

Register at Advance registration is required.

SW florida mangrove coast 250NAPLES, Fla. – Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve is celebrating its 40th anniversary with the production of a full-length documentary film. The film, titled “Southwest Florida’s Mangrove Coast, is slated to air on many of Florida's PBS stations, including WGCU (Ft. Myers) on April 22 and April 28. As part of this project, Live Oak Production Group has also produced a series of video shorts.

View shorts|View list of broadcasts

fire 250Rookery Bay Research Reserve staff and partners from the Florida Park Service D-4 VIPER burn team, Collier Seminole State Park and FWC Naples office burned 154 acres of scrubby pine flatwoods in the heart of the reserve. The burn effectively reduced the fuel loads and cleared out the understory, providing access for deer, gopher tortoise and other animals that rely on native grasses that are crowded out when the forest thickens. Working with partners is crucial to ensuring the proper resources are employed for maximum safety of staff and adjacent property.

Learn more about prescribed fire.

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