FWC

High alert for red tide at Navarre Beach

High alert for red tide at Navarre Beach

In northwest Florida, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation (FWC), “high” concentrations of K. brevis were observed in one Santa Rosa county sample and “medium” concentrations occurred in Santa Rosa and Okaloosa county samples. In Northwest Florida over the past week, K. brevis was observed at very low concentrations in or offshore of Escambia […]

Navarre Beach sees elevated red tide

Navarre Beach sees elevated red tide

Spectators hoping to catch a glimpse of Hurricane Michael’s incoming fury last week along Navarre Beach may have noticed a tickle in their throats or even fits of coughing. That was likely due to elevated levels of red tide in the area, said Kelly Richmond of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. While the […]

BearWise grant to secure restaurant dumpsters

BearWise grant to secure restaurant dumpsters

South Santa Rosa County has been selected for a $58,000 grant to prevent bears from getting into local restaurant trash cans. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) awarded a total of $500,000 in grants to 10 communities to reduce human-bear conflicts as part of BearWise. Santa Rosa’s grant would go toward modifying dumpsters to […]

FWC grants provide big boost to lionfish research

FWC grants provide big boost to lionfish research

Lionfish continue to pose a threat to native wildlife and habitats in Florida. To help battle the problem, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has awarded $50,000 to five organizations to aid in research and development of innovative methods to remove lionfish from deep-water habitats. Read the full article in the July 5 […]

FWC returns panther family back to the wild

FWC returns panther family back to the wild

FWC returns panther family back to the wild   Photo by Carlton Ward Jr. in partnership with FWC. A female panther and her two kittens are back in the wild today, after spending months in captivity. On April 10, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) panther team released the panther family on the Picayune Strand […]

Humpback whale surprises Panhandle

Humpback whale surprises Panhandle

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) Officers got a super-sized surprise last week when a humpback whale made a visit to coastal waters along the Gulf of Mexico. The two officers were in the state waters less than 20 miles offshore near Panama City Beach Feb. 15 when they spotted an unusual ocean mammal. […]

FWC investigating death of bear in Navarre

FWC investigating death of bear in Navarre

A black bear was found dead near a home on Casa de Oro Street in Navarre around 2 p.m. Wednesday. Elizabeth Garrett found the bear when she came home that afternoon. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is investigating the incident at this time. FWC believes the bear was shot. Anyone with information is […]

Hunting creates memories, aids wildlife conservation

Hunting creates memories, aids wildlife conservation

Hunting season begins this week for deer and turkey in this part of Florida, and there is no shortage of opportunities for those who love to hunt. “Florida is blessed to have nearly 6 million acres of public hunting land, and even if you don’t have a quota hunt permit, there are still wildlife management […]

Versatility of FWC officers on display in Texas

Versatility of FWC officers on display in Texas

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers are as versatile as any law enforcement agents out there. Officers do everything from patrolling the water and woods, on the lookout for fishing and hunting violations, to assisting in chasing down criminals on the run. They also jump into action when a hurricane cripples an area, such […]

Take a Kid Fishing set for October

Take a Kid Fishing set for October

The Navarre Beach Fishing pier will be the site of the Take a Kid Fishing event on Navarre Beach in October. The event coincides with the Navarre Beach Fishing Rodeo that will also be going on that weekend. The Santa Rosa County Board of County Commissioners approved the Navarre Chamber Foundation’s request for the use […]

Scallop population woes keep ban in effect

Scallop population woes keep ban in effect

While the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission recently restructured the season structure for recreational scalloping, the outlook for that opportunity opening up in Northwest Florida in the near future isn’t the brightest. Searches have been done in this area, including two scheduled for this year, but they haven’t produced results indicating there is a […]

FWC offers a variety of holiday gift ideas

FWC offers a variety of holiday gift ideas

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission offers several gift ideas for holiday shoppers, and the proceeds from some of those gifts will directly fund conservation efforts. A hunting license is one idea and they can be purchased at GoOutdoorsFlorida.com or by stopping by a participating retailer. You can also call 1-888-347-4356. Read the full […]

Safety key to successful hunting trips

Safety key to successful hunting trips

Learning about hunting safety can make all the difference in the world. Tony Young, the media relations coordinator for the Division of Hunting and Game Management for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, said incidents in the field have been reduced significantly in the last 25 years. “Hunting is a safe activity and hunter […]

Turtle center hatches

Turtle center hatches

The wooden beachfront shack sat vacant, collecting sand and salty grime from years of lacking care. Mold had begun to grow on the walls, floors and ceiling of the county-owned building. Once a state park information center, it shut its doors in 2008, left to sit and rot. Until some turtle ladies, a handful of […]

Audubon Florida steps up to protect shorebirds

Audubon Florida steps up to protect shorebirds

On a hot and humid July afternoon Lori Bell and a handful of volunteers for the Audubon Society were on the Navarre Beach Causeway as traffic rolled past them. Their purpose was to erect fencing for the shorebirds along the causeway and a couple of other spots on Navarre Beach in an effort to protect […]

Study tracks turtle hatchling gender

Study tracks turtle hatchling gender

Boy or girl? It is the first question many expectant parents have on the brain. For the hundreds of loggerhead sea turtle babies waiting to hatch on Navarre Beach, answering that question depends on the weather, specifically the temperature of the sand. “Boys are cool. Girls are hot,” Cathy Holmes of the Navarre Beach Sea […]

FWC discusses ways to deal with human-bear conflicts

FWC discusses ways to deal with human-bear conflicts

The reality of the bear problem in Florida is that it’s not going away. It’s why informational public workshops such as the one held Tuesday night at First Baptist Church in Navarre have become the norm in an effort to find the best way to deal with human-bear conflicts. “We want to empower people so […]

Roadway collisions with bears on the rise

Roadway collisions with bears on the rise

Drivers are warned to be aware of bears on roadways because it’s not uncommon for an accident to occur that involves a bear being hit by a car. More than 3,200 bears have been killed on roads in the state between 1990 and 2015, with more than 200 being killed in each of the last […]

Boating course clearly impacts water safety

Boating course clearly impacts water safety

For nearly two decades the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has provided a Florida Boater Education ID test that can be taken online or at home and mailed in. The 75-question certification exam is required for those born on or after Jan. 1, 1988, in order to operate a vessel on the water. “We […]

FWC offers free fishing weekends

FWC offers free fishing weekends

Florida Gov.  Rick Scott announced two license-free fishing weekends in June. The first took place this past weekend for saltwater fishing and the second, a freshwater fishing weekend, is scheduled for this Saturday and Sunday for Florida residents and visitors. “Florida is the fishing capital of the world,” Scott said in a press release. “As […]

FWC fuels fishing fever

FWC fuels fishing fever

Fishing is a big part of Pete Della Ratta’s life. Not only does he enjoy doing it, but he loves educating students about it, whether it’s at various fishing clinics throughout the area in the summer months or taking seventh-graders on a fishing field trip each year. “I love showing students the basics of fishing […]

Abandoned boats are statewide headache, hazard

Abandoned boats are statewide headache, hazard

The 23-foot sailboat gone belly up in Santa Rosa Sound near the designated swimming area of Shoreline Park in Gulf Breeze is one of 377 “derelict vessel” cases currently under investigation by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Such boats, besides being eyesores and potential hazards to navigation, frustrate local law enforcement agencies that […]

Changes made to fishing regulations for 2016

Changes made to fishing regulations for 2016

Several changes have been made to the Florida Recreational Saltwater Fishing Regulations for the 2016 season, including the dates for Red Snapper season in the Gulf. In Florida, the season for Red Snapper fishing started May 7 and is open each Saturday and Sunday through May 21 before running continuously May 28 through July 10. […]

World record lionfish haul

World record lionfish haul

The 8,089 lionfish caught at the weekend event in Pensacola was a world record.  “It was four times more than we have ever had,” said Alex Fogg with Florida Fish and Wildlife.  “These tournaments are very significant to the reefs.  You can control them on a localized level like this if you do it often.”  […]

Bear-control law shot down

Bear-control law shot down

No, residents of Santa Rosa won’t be breaking the law by failing to pick up ripe fruit that has fallen from trees or bushes in their yards. County commissioners this week unanimously rejected adopting an ordinance modeled after one in Seminole County that contains such requirements. Despite numerous complaints of black bears being a nuisance, […]

Five Things to Know in Florida for May 10

Five Things to Know in Florida for May 10

1 YEAR AND A DAY IN PRISON FOR THREATENING FLORIDA MOSQUES The Justice Department reported 43-year-old Martin Alan Schnitzler’s sentencing in a news release Monday. He pleaded guilty in February to obstructing persons in the free exercise of religious beliefs. He had faced up to 20 years in prison. LEAPING STURGEON KNOCKS BOATER UNCONSCIOUS ON […]

Engineering career leads Phillips back to alma mater

Engineering career leads Phillips back to alma mater

Jenna Phillips saw her interest in science fueled to another level while in high school. It was during a field trip with Charlene Mauro’s science class. “I mentioned to Charlene that one of my favorite memories was a field trip to Big Pine Key,” said Phillips, a 2002 graduate of Navarre. “I would say it […]

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