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BearWe live in Bear Country! Did you know that bears are attracted to landscape plants as well as garbage? Trimming the seed pods off your palms and harvesting fruit regularly can help deter bears from damaging your property. Learn more about bears


Rookery Bay Reserve hosted a boat tour for board members and staff of the South Florida Water Management District and Big Cypress Basin on May 8, 2013.  Read article.

leatherback sea turtleMay 9, 2013

Reserve staff assisted Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) in the rescue of a leatherback sea turtle, a rare species to find on this coast of Florida today. A boater approximately three miles west of Caxambas Pass on Marco Island called the FWC to report a turtle entangled in a crab trap line and they contacted reserve staff member Greg Curry. After the trap line was cut in several places the turtle (a sub-adult) was able to swim free. This endangered sea turtle species nests on the East Coast of Florida and is known to dive deeper and travel farther than most other species of sea turtle.

Leatherback turtle

Read more about the Reserve's involvement in the Marine Mammal (and sea turtle) Stranding Network

bumblebee-bestNatural insecticides derived from plants can effectively help you protect your garden. Quassia, derived from the bark of the Picrasma quassidoes tree, is effective against sawfly, leaf miners, and soft-bodied aphids and caterpillars and does not harm bees, ladybugs, and other "good" insects. Pyrethrum, derived from chrysanthemum, should only be sprayed directly on the pest as it is non-discriminatory and will kill beneficial insects. Other low-toxicity pesticides include mild soap solutions such as Ivory liquid. Soaps can be effective against aphids, mealy bugs, scale, white flies, and red spider mites. Homemade plant sprays such as table salt spray, tomato leaf spray and  other recipes using a variety of ingredients (onion, garlic, hot peppers, pungent herbs) can also be tried. Consult an organic gardening reference for more information. Learn more about how Project Greenscape promotes sustainable landscaping practices through implementing strategic, science-based education and how you can enroll in one of their workshops!


-All-new footage and music will delight visitors to the Environmental Learning Center -

NAPLES– Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve is pleased to announce the release of its new feature film, "Rookery Bay– A Special Place," in the auditorium of the Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center on Friday, May 10.

The new 10-minute film, shot and directed by Elam Stoltzfus with Live Oak Production Group in Blountstown, Florida, will replace the previous version, also by Stoltzfus, that has been shown in the center since opening in 2004.  Music and score were composed by J. Robert Houghtaling of Marco Island, and narration is by Peter Thomas, who recorded the voiceover for the original film.


-Tour of the Reserve provided insights to benefits of Everglades Restoration-

Boat tourNAPLES -- Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve hosted the South Florida Water Management District Governing Board and the Big Cypress Basin Board, who met today in Collier County for the first time. The board members were convened to discuss funding for the operation and management of the Picayune Strand State Forest restoration project, the first of several Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Projects to get underway in south Florida.

TracLoaderRookery Bay Reserve Facilities and Resource Management staff recently went through training to learn the safest way to operate the new Trac-Loader. We are proud to see our team working together to make safety a priority!

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