Panther Island Adventures!

Panther Island is 2,800 acres of restored wetland and upland habitats situated in the northwest corner of Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary's 13,000 acres. It is home to numerous plants and animals including the Florida panther and the iconic wood stork.
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Monday, January 26, 2015

Prescribed fire season

Many people ask about management techniques, and the most economical and best for ecosystem health, in my mind, is prescribed fire. We conduct these on Corkscrew for a variety of reasons. And recently we did one just north of the exit boardwalk at the Visitor Center. Our target habitats were wet prairie and pine flatwoods. The burn went well and hopefully there will be zephyr lilies in the burned area in the coming weeks! 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Retiring the old Swamp Buggy

Well, we had a good run for awhile there, but then you became temperamental and unreliable. You'd run for a day then breakdown. It just became an unhealthy relationship my friend. So after 6 years together, it is time for you to retire and be used for other types of adventures. Thanks for the good times and the laughs!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Swamp Rule #3: Watch out for knees!

Over the next week, when in the field I will be tackling some grasses in drying down cypress fringes. One of the things I learned the hard way in the past is to always ALWAYS watch out for cypress knees! Again, I do often get overzealous when I get into a nice spraying rhythm and sometimes this passion leads me to make bad choices when picking a path through the off-road areas I need to treat. Smaller cypress knees for these fringe areas are often hidden in dense vegetation. While funny, it does delay me. All I can say is thank goodness for winches!

Survey Sunday!

One of the things I love as a resource manager is collaborating with our science director Dr. Shawn Clem on monitoring of wildlife. Luckily, my tenacity with treating in the field has proven my dedication and allows me to do bird surveys as part of the science program she is building. So this morning I am out counting birds which is data for the program and helps me understand the wildlife present and helps me in directing my management efforts. Pretty cool link between science and management right?! 

Plus I get to see beautiful sunrises. 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Reflections of 2014

2014 was definitely a year of ups and downs in the resource management world. Sightings of amazing animals and vistas while tackling invasive plants were peppered with downtime from equipment breakdowns. A second AmeriCorps group came and did an amazing job, and I hosted two Outward Bound groups who learned about Corkscrew and our mission as well as killed some Brazilian pepper for us. I dropped the ball on the blogging side of things, but I am back and better than ever for 2015!

So stay tuned for another year of amazing happenings in the back country at Corkscrew's Panther Island.