10000 Birds – Paddling Piney Z Lake

Four months ago, a full parking lot wouldn’t have caused my blood pressure to spike. Four months ago, I would have taken to the crowded pathway at Lafayette Heritage Trail Park like a horse to pasture, reveling in the outdoor exercise and rare time away from my new baby. Four months ago, I wouldn’t have…

Audubon – March 1 Marks the Beginning of Beach Nesting Bird Season

Spring brings nesting sea and shorebirds to Florida’s coastlines. Making scoop nests right on the sand, the plovers, terns, and American Oystercatchers must overcome storm surges, algal blooms, and human disturbance to successfully fledge chicks each year. So far, the first reported nests have come from Dog Island, with three Snowy Plover pairs successfully laying…

10000 Birds – Birding with Baby

Over a month had gone by since the birth of my first child. When you don’t know anything about babies, the initial 30 days are a crash course in hormones and learning how to take care of a newborn – feeding, diapering, and so much more. I barely had time to shower, let alone take…

Audubon – Field Work at the Edge of Florida

Audubon biologist Alex Blochel loads up the Pathfinder boat at the Everglades Science Center (ESC), tossing in snorkel gear and measuring equipment for a full day of field work on the water. The dawn light has just crested the shiny leaves of Florida Bay mangroves, and he’ll need all the daylight he can get to measure submerged aquatic vegetation…

Audubon – New Living Shoreline

Mark Rachal steps into the 20-foot center console skiff, throwing rope lines back into the boat and motoring towards the Richard T. Paul Alafia Banks Bird Sanctuary. As he moves away from the boat launch, Brown Pelicans, Forster’s Terns, and Great Egrets wheel across the blue sky overhead, a testament to the importance of the…

10000 Birds – New Birds, New Reasons to Be Late to Work

I recently moved to Tallahassee, a city known for its robust network of lakes and ponds. From natural formations to impoundments, reservoirs to golf-course carve-outs, there is a lot of water in Tallahassee. My new house sits adjacent to one such lake, which probably used to fill up naturally during rainy times but has been artificially impounded…

DUN Magazine – Salt. Water. Quality.

It’s a bright Florida day as Captain Gabrielle Mercado reverses her Lady Luck Adventure charter boat out of the slip and motors towards the Choctawhatchee Bay. The emerald green waters of the Gulf of Mexico are just over the dunes in the intracoastal waterway, and she keeps a close eye on her GPS as she moves…

Audubon Florida – New Records of Banded Skimmers in Key West

As the sun set on Key West, Florida, Dr. Kristen Markovich spotted a mixed flock of Black Skimmers and gulls. Using the remaining light, she photographed the birds, zooming in to take a closer look. A green band attached to the bright orange leg of one of the skimmers caught her eye: “0B.” Through this simple…

Guest Post for Knit One Crochet Too: Baby Alpaca Socks

I set the skeins of baby alpaca on my kitchen table, one in light blue, one in cream. The strands felt soft to the touch, perfect for the long socks I had planned. The cuff would be yellow, as would the toes, a perfect lining between the skin and tall, knee-high boots. Only, in Northwest Florida I wouldn’t…