On May 22, my last evening of sampling for May in Fakahatchee Bay, we caught only one shark, but that small neonate (newborn) bull shark was the one I was hoping for. I’ve been trying to acoustically tag the youngest bull sharks I can catch in the bays furthest from the altered Faka Union canal system. I’m trying to see if sharks born in bays with higher salinity patterns will seek out the altered freshwater flows coming from the Faka Union canal, where millions of gallons of fresh water are directed across the land to the Gulf of Mexico.
Last week, environmental specialists Jared and Sarah were checking the trail cameras off Shell Island Road when they came across this lively lady: a 12-foot long, 75-pound Burmese python. She was basking on the road. Their training came in handy: they were able to safely capture her and stow her in a snake bag until scientists with Conservancy of Southwest Florida arrived to take her away. The necropsy they perform on this snake will help us learn more about Burmese python natural history, and specifically, what she has been eating. Learn more about this work.
Rookery Bay Research Reserve and Florida Department of Environmental Protection are working with Live Oak Production Group to produce a full-length documentary film showcasing the reserve for its 40th anniversary. Below is a compilation of short videos produced with the footage captured for the film. The films range in length from two to five minutes each.
Last month, our avian team noticed a Red Knot on Keewaydin Island with a colored/numbered flag on its leg. Using a zoom lens, photos taken of the band and photo editing software made it possible to read "021" on the flag, and inquiries were made to determine the bird's origin. Research staff member Anne Mauro then learned the bird was banded in 2009 at Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge in Massachusetts.