FWC

When Florida wildlife leaders effectively declared “open season” on iguanas, they called for the animals to be killed on private property. And just this week, they doubled down on python eradication. Both animals are considered invasive species in Florida, but recent and past issues with how the animals have been killed has led to accusations of animal cruelty. The state says all killings have to be done “humanely”. But, what does that actually mean? 

pythons
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

Florida agencies are increasing the number of python hunters—and the amount of land they're allowed to hunt on. 

 

"We're committed to doubling the resources for python removal in the upcoming year," Governor Ron DeSantis said.

DeSantis made the announcement at Everglades Holiday Park in Broward County Wednesday afternoon. Six people held a fidgety 12-foot long python behind him. 

"Could you move a little bit that way with it?" Desantis asked the snake handlers, laughing. 

Richard Elzey/Flickr

State wildlife investigators announced Tuesday that they've wrapped up a two-year investigation targeting what they say is a criminal conspiracy in the spiny lobster fishing industry.

Lobster is Florida's most valuable commercial fishery, with landings usually worth more than $40 million a year.

Investigators went undercover and conducted surveillance in what they called "Operation Thimblerig." Thimblerig is another term for shell game.

Three people face felony charges including racketeering, fraud and identity theft.

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is pumping another $4 million into efforts to help local communities suffering from red tide and a massive algae outbreak, raising spending to $13 million for the water problems.

The agency’s money will be used in Pinellas, Manatee, Collier, Sarasota, Lee and Martin counties.

Labor Day is the last day to participate in the Lionfish Challenge.

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.

As law enforcement agencies across Florida consider using body cameras, the state’s wildlife officers are following suit.

FWC

A Texas woman was arrested in Key West Friday, after an officer from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission found her with three plastic containers holding 40 queen conch.

The mollusk — the symbol of the Florida Keys — is protected and cannot be taken from the water in Florida.

Most of the animals were still alive and were returned to the water.