Florida Fish and WIldlife Conservation Commission

Florida Gov. DeSantis Signs Red Tide Research Bill

Jun 21, 2019
KATIE LEPRI / WLRN

Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into law Thursday an initiative between the state and Sarasota-based Mote Marine Laboratory that includes $3 million a year for the next five years to research the causes and impacts of red tide.

The bill (SB 1552) creates the Florida Red Tide Mitigation and Technology Development Initiative as a partnership between the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute and Mote Marine Laboratory.

Blenny Fish
Courtesy Jack Israel / WLRN

Anglins Fishing Pier in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea has been open since 1941, and many consider it to be a town staple. However, it has been only partially open for fishing and sightseeing since Hurricane Irma damaged part of it in 2017. 

Underwater workers first began to repair the historic structure this spring. But a small group of divers is now concerned that a tiny fish that lives among barnacles there - the Tessellated Blenny - may have had its marine habitat damaged in the process. 

Florida is home to more than 500 invasive species. Not all of these plants and animals are big and scary like pythons, but they can still harm the state’s native wildlife, and a lot of time and money is spent fighting them.

This week Florida Matters speaks with scientists on the front lines of this battle about how we’re doing.


State wildlife officials are drafting a rule to protect Florida’s native songbirds from illegal trapping. Officers are seeing an increase in bird trafficking for the pet industry.

Next Steps Eyed In Fight Against Water Woes

Jan 23, 2019
STEPHEN SPLANE / WUSF PUBLIC MEDIA

Local governments have spent $17.3 million the state provided to combat outbreaks of red tide and toxic blue-green algae, which have caused massive fish kills and fouled waters in coastal areas for more than a year.

After months of widespread red tide infestation along Florida's coast, the noxious algae bloom is giving much of the state a break.

Tourists weren't scattered on beaches in southwest Florida on Thursday, but hundreds of dead fish were.

The Herald-Tribune reports that visitors piled into the parking lot of Venice Beach, got out of their cars, started hacking, coughing and sneezing and then quickly left.

The captain of a charter boat carrying government scientists on an environmental research cruise near the Keys has been cited for violating environmental regulations.

Kathleen Dubos / WLRN news

Every morning, Daria Feinstein checks the bird feeders in her backyard in Coral Gables. She loves watching the wild macaws that fly around her neighborhood and stop to get food. She says their feathers look like rainbows.

The birds have been coming to her house for over 15 years, but now she’s afraid she won’t see them anymore. People increasingly capture wild macaws.

"A parrot lover in Jacksonville came down to see the wild macaws and there was only one," says Feinstein.

Adrianne Gonzalez / WLRN News

In a Miami-Dade courtroom, Judge Spencer Eig heard arguments Thursday both for and against a controversial development planned on an environmentally rare Pine Rocklands habitat in South Miami-Dade, near Zoo Miami.

It’s Nesting season for Florida’s waterbirds. And, Florida wildlife officials say it’s important the public keeps its distance, while on the beach or boating on the state’s waterways.

Florida Keys--Public Libraries

There will be no harvesting of Goliath Grouper in Florida, for now.

In an effort to reduce the number of invasive iguanas in South Florida, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has funded a project in which scientists from the University of Florida approach green iguanas sleeping at night with the goal of killing them.

Miami Herald

It’s that time of year when manatees start to take ‘snowbird’ vacations and become South Floridians for the winter months.  

Kate Stein / WLRN

Seafood is a big part of South Florida’s culinary scene and its culture. Conch, snapper, mahi mahi, grouper, marlin and stone crab -- they have places in our hearts, as well as on our plates.

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