Manatee County Audubon Society is thrilled to announce the hiring of 5 new interns! These interns will be committing 40 hours a month from January to June to help with a variety of on going or upcoming projects. Half of their time will be solely directed towards implementing the habitat management plan on Felts Preserve. If you see them out and about, be sure to say hi and ask them lots of questions!
"Hi! I am a junior at Eckerd College studying Biology and Environmental Studies. I am passionate about ecology research and connecting people to the outdoors through science. I'm very excited to learn and grow through this internship!"
Hi, my name is Zach Cavanaugh. I’m 22 years old and have lived in Sarasota, FL my whole life. I’m currently a senior at the University of South Florida, majoring in environmental studies. I am passionate about conservation and wildlife ecology, and am excited for this internship to serve both as my first work experience in the field and a great way to help my community.
On May 6, 2020 after months of negotiations to insure that the interests of our members are best served, previous MCAS president Ray Jusseaume signed the contract assigning a Conservation Easement to the Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast.
Under the terms of the contract, Felts Preserve must remain a preserve forever. There has been a tremendous surge of property being sold for both residential and commercial uses all around us. Felts may serve as a last refuge for the local and migratory wildlife that call our preserve and surrounding area home.
Karen and Jim Watch as Ray Signs Felts Preserve into the future.
Monthly Conservation Roundup
County Level: Manatee County Conservation Land Acquisition Tax Passes!
Thank you Manatee County Audubon Society members and the general public who supported the new Manatee County Bond Referendum to help protect land and water resources from over development. Your voice was heard and the county will begin protecting land of conservation concern as early as 2021! https://www.bradenton.com/news/politics-government/election/article246891167.html
State Level: New Species of Whale Discovered
A tiny population of baleen whales (~100 total individuals) that was previously presumed to be a subspecies of Byrd's Whale has been confirmed as a new species. This small population is already listed as endangered and will need continued conservation action to protect for the future. Read more at: https://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/environment/os-ne-whale-species-gulf-of-mexico-20210131-rm6deu72ubaqvebfspyoo2ozpq-story.html
State Level: 27,000 acres donated to the University of Florida in Osceola County
The De Luca Family has donated 27,000 acres to the University of Florida in conjunction with Wild Ducks Unlimited. The university has said that it will use the land for land and natural resources management. Top research questions include how wildlife respond on grazing pressure, water storage and conservation, and land and forest management. Home to many threatened species including Florida grasshopper sparrows, red-cockaded woodpeckers, gopher tortoises and can serve as a corridor for Florida panthers and many other wildlife species. A huge conservation success story right next to the critical Kissimmee State Park. http://blogs.ifas.ufl.edu/news/2020/11/30/27000-acres-gifted-to-uf-for-conservation-outdoor-classroom-and-laboratory/