FMNP 2004 Goals
../ l II" "i ur The new year is upon us and the FMNP office is planning, making
/i O, resolutions, and contemplating the future. First, let's look at the
SFFMNP status and progress since our first classes during 2001:
FMNP Summary 2001-2003
2001 2002 2003
UTNIVERSITY OF I .. Courses Completed ---FMNP Graduates
F L O R ID A picture says a thousand words. But educating individuals is
T]L6 only one of our goals. The FMNP is an action-oriented program.
Our ultimate objective is to provide individuals with tools so that
IFA S EXTEN SION they may contribute to the education of others.
.................Many FMNP grads are contributing through volunteer service.
Many more would like to do so. During 2004, we want to
encourage action, monitor contributions, and reward
The FMNP Job/Volunteer Opportunities web page is a good place
to start. The site provides info and links to organizations
throughout Florida that have volunteer opportunities for FMNP
graduates. This is a great resource; pass the word on to others.
We also want to monitor volunteer service by FMNP graduates
and have created a Volunteer Tracking system on the FMNP web
site to do so. This new site allows FMNP volunteers to log
volunteer hours, which will enable us to measure impacts and
reward individuals and FMNP regions (Instructors) with
community service awards. We'll be mailing/e-mailing all FMNP
graduates with passwords and information on how to use the
Searching for Ant Lions, E.L.C. Vero Beach class new Volunteer Tracking system during January. Let's tell others
what we're doing!
Program Update ...................................... 1
ducationlConservation Events ...................... 2
Wild Eye ........................ ........................ 3
Dr. Martin B. Main
interpretive Tracks .................................... 3 FMNP Program Director
lass Information .................................... 4 UF Associate Professor and Ecologist
Southwest Florida Research and Education Center
Contacts ................... .......................... 4
Winter Environmental Education and Conservation Events
Submit educational events or conservation project needs by e-mail to email@example.com
Advanced FMNP Graduate Opportunity: Be a Florida Grasshopper Sparrow Research Assistant
Join biologists conducting the Grasshopper sparrow's decline research at Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park and
learn about one of our nation's most endangered species. This cryptic, ground-nesting bird is now found only in a few
locations in central Florida. The Preserve has the largest parcel of dry prairie (prime grasshopper sparrow habitat) in
the United States. If you have yet to discover this wonderful natural gem in central Florida, this is a great opportunity!
What: Participants will flush birds into mist nets by dragging a 100-foot rope through the undergrowth. Biologists
will demonstrate how to remove, measure, and band sparrows while they collect project data.
Who: Open to 20 Florida Master Naturalist graduates.
How: Wear sturdy shoes or boots and long pants. Strenuous activity includes moving quickly through uneven and
uncleared terrain (e.g., palmetto) with the rope. Bring your own lunch, plenty of water, hat, sunscreen, and bug spray.
When: 8 am to noon. Picnic afterwards; park hiking, bicycle riding, and horseback riding available afterwards.
Where: Meet at campground located 5 miles inside the park entrance gate. Directions: www.floridastateparks.org
Reservation Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, Ginger Allen, 239-658-3400
Central Florida Park Service "Want to be a Volunteer Day"
FMNP graduates are needed to assist in implementing natural resource management and education goals.
Information provided at: Paynes Prairie visitor center, February 7th, 10 am noon
Lunch provided; optional hike depending on weather and interest of participants
RSVP: Joni Ellis 352-955-2135, Joni.L.Ellis@dep.state.fl.us, http://www.floridastateparks.org/paynesprairie/default.asp
*Basic Wilderness First Aid: 8- to 10-hr wilderness first-aid training for short trips and/or low-risk leaders.
Topics: heat emergencies, hypothermia, sunburn, lightning, hazardous animals and plants, bites and stings, assessing
and treating injuries/medical emergencies using basic first-aid skills and practicing mock simulations.
Course date: Sat., March 20, 8 am 5 pm at Univ. of FL, Student Health Care Center, CPR/ First Aid Office, Gainesville.
Contact: Jon Duff (352) 392-1161 x4283, or www.health.ufl.edu/shcc, click on the CPR Alligator.
*Wilderness First Aid: Intensive 16- to 20-hr course for more serious wilderness activities and long or remote trip
leaders. Topics: same as above but more details, more skills practice, and role playing wilderness accident scenarios.
Course dates: February 7 & 8, 9 am 5 pm both days or April 3 & 4, 9 am 5 pm both days
*These skills will be very helpful in preparing you to handle wilderness trip emergencies. Those who successfully
complete either course receive a 3-year certificate from the American Safety & Health Institute.
The Conservancy of SW Florida's Annual Signature Event with National Geographic's underwater photographer,
David Doubilet. Dive into the marvels of the deep blue seas. For tickets or information, call (239) 591-1348
Where: Naples Beach Hotel, Thursday, February 19, 2004, 7 pm, as David presents his award-winning underwater
photos from all corners of the world and addresses the need for a conservation ethic to protect coral reefs, the jewels of
the sea. The proceeds from the event will support programs to protect Southwest Florida's natural environment.
The Conservancy of SW Florida's Naples Nature Center Winter Lecture Series, 7 pm, www.conservancy.org/
Cost: (each lecture) $10 for members, $15 for non-members. (Series) $35 members, $45 non-members.
February 25, Dr. Tom Crisman: Learning To Live With Less: The Global Challenge
March 3, Dr. Meg Lowman: Rainforests at The Crossroads
March 10, Billy Causey: Naples & The Keys Neighbors in Conservation
March 17, David Ceilley: Science On Film: Monitoring Wildlife
Florida Botanical Gardens 2004 Garden Fest, Saturday, January 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 12175 125th St. N. Largo.
Pinellas County staff and master gardeners offer hands-on demonstration program for participants to learn how to
arrange plants in the yard in an artistic style, plant a butterfly garden, grow herbs, vegetables, flowers, and get expert
advice on how to prune and pot plants. The Florida Botanical Gardens is a public garden and part of the Pinewood
Cultural Park campus, and home to the UF, IFAS/ Pinellas County Extension, Gulf Coast Museum of Art, and Heritage
Village. For more information contact the Pinellas County Extension Office at (727) 582-2200 or go to www.flbg.org.
Featured Web Site:
USDA Plants Database http://plants.usda.gov Searchable plant database with pictures, and ranges.
Send us your favorite environmental education web sites, and we will post them.
Educational Aids: Butterfly Identification Cards (2 sets)
Over 40 species of butterflies and caterpillars in each laminated full-color identification deck, perfect for use in the
field, or in the classroom. Available for purchase at- www.ifasbooks.ufl.edu
Wild Eye Watch & on:
White M Hairstreak, Parrhasius m-album 1-2"
Identifiers: upperside iridescent blue, underside gray brown;
white/black lines forming an "M"
Adaptations: tailed, orange/red hind-wing spot
Status: somewhat common
Reproduction: 3-4 broods per year
Habitat: pine/oak or hardwood forests c
Host plants: oaks Nectar plants: viburnum, sumac, sourwood, |
milkweed, lantana, dogwood, and goldenrod
There are 22 "hairstreaks," named for the finely streaked markings and hair-like tails, that occur in Florida. The White M
Hairstreak is encountered on small flowering plants along the edges of hardwood forests. The iridescent blue back is only
seen as an erratic flash when the butterfly is flying. The drab gray hind wings are folded up when feeding or at rest to
cover the blue. Many animals have chemical, behavioral, or physical predator avoidance tactics. The White M has 2 such
devices. Near the rear of the hind wings is a single, bright-red patch that mimics an eye, along with two small, hair-like
tails that resemble antennae. Thus, predators aim their attack for the back of the butterfly and not the vulnerable head
area, which hopefully results in a small mouthful of wing. In Florida, the first new brood flights of the year appear in
late February or early March.
Interpretive Tracks f 4 ,
Coloration in Nature
As naturalists, we are constantly increasing our knowledge of different ,-
species, habitat processes, and conservation issues. But there are many
interesting things to discuss in nature. In fact, there is everything to
discuss, such as color.
Coloration occurs in nature for many reasons. For example, coloration '
can be important in attracting mates, which is a strategy used by brightly
colored male birds. Coloration may be used to signal potential
adversaries and defend territories, as exemplified by the brightly colored
dewlaps of green and brown anoles. Color can be defensive and used to
warn potential predators aposematicc coloration). The bright, orange-red
velvet ant and the bold white stripe of a skunk are good examples.
Coloration is used for camouflage to hide from predators and to ambush
prey and sometimes to mimic other things or species. The caterpillar of
the giant swallowtail looks like bird droppings, and the wings of many
moths and butterflies possess eyespots. Coloration may also attract seed
dispersers (why are ripe berries red?) or pollinators (showy flowers
often lack scent).
What about iridescence? Have you wondered why iridescence occurs in '" i
ir-i-des-cent (ir'i-deslent) adjective .(
1. Producing a display of lustrous, rainbow-like colors" '
2. Brilliant, lustrous, or colorful in effect or appearance '
Iridescence increases visibility, sometimes to great distances. Studies i
have found some iridescent butterflies to be visible at half a mile away!
Iridescence is more common in terrestrial than aquatic species and is
produced from light interacting with structures (e.g., cells, feathers) that Southern Blue Flag (Iris virginica)
are arranged in alternating layers of high and low refractive index. In Aquatic monocot. Sword-shaped leaves grow fan-like
simple terms, iridescence is produced by light reflecting from intricately from rhizome roots up to 4 feet tall. Large flowers in
layered structures, whereas cryptic coloration is produced from more s o u p
continuous layering. shades of blue, pink, or white
Color is an important component of the natural world and provides a
great deal to discuss. So, on your next trip out, consider color as an Drawing by Ann Murray, Centerfor Aquatic & Invasive
informative and entertaining component of your interpretive program. Plants, University of Florida, Gainesville
Current Course Offerings
Freshwater Wetlands Classes:
January 15-March 13 (Alachua County)
January 31-March 13 (Hillsborough County)
February 2-April 2 (Suwannee County)
February 26-April 8 (Collier County)
May 1-26 (Glades County)
Coastal Systems Classes:
January 5-February 12 (Citrus County)
January 6-February 17 (Collier County)
January 6-March 23 (Alachua County)
January 13-February 3 (Lee County)
January 15-February 19 (Polk County)
January 16-February 27 (Walton County)
January 20-February 21 (Santa Rosa County)
January 20-March 25 (Indian River County)
January 28-February 18 (Flagler/St. Johns County)
February 19-March 25 (Highlands County)
February 20-March 26 (Volusia County)
February 28-April 3 (Palm Beach County)
March 2-April 13 (Collier County)
April 13-June 8 (Dade County)
Go to www.MasterNaturalist.org
Click on "Course Offerings" for locations and time
schedules. After you have chosen your course,
follow the prompts to register online.
For program details: Click on "Information"
I'm going to miss my FMNP class
By Belinda Chase, Freshwater Wetlands Naturalist
It was with mixed feelings that I drove away from Sarasota's Crowley
Museum. In one way, I was looking forward to an extra hour in my
day to run errands; in another way, I was sad to be leaving something
that has meant a lot to me over the last six weeks. What a diverse
group of people we were from all walks of life, from north and south,
varied in age, education, and vocation. But with 2 things in common:
a love of nature and the desire to learn more about it. Jean Blackburn
said it best in one of our earlier classes. When Debbie Dixon asked if
we were overwhelmed with the information, Jean called out: "We are
We absorbed names, characteristics, and terms. Under the skilled
leadership of Debbie Dixon, we investigated swamps, marshes,
prairies, and hammocks. We were led unaware into knee-deep swamp
water and across feral hog rootings. What an adventure!! And what
troopers we all were! Given a little more time, who knows where we
might have gone.
We were also tossed back into the school-day routine of reference
books, outlines, and internet searches for our group presentations.
Despite some nervousness and stage fright, we all presented with
grace and dignity, learning plenty of new things.
The last afternoon, everyone spoke about the class, and we all
expressed praise for the whole experience and gratitude for the new
friendships and knowledge we had gained. And now we look forward
to a possible class reunion in the future, where we will once again
become sponges and absorb but this time salt water instead of fresh,
in a Coastal class.
FMNP Wetlands Module funding provided by:
-Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission,
Advisory Council on Environmental Education (ACEE)
-Southwest Florida Council for Environment Education,
FMNP Coastal Module funding provided by:
-Florida Sea Grant, University of Florida, IFAS
-Florida Marine Research Institute,
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
-Hubbs-Sea World Research Institute
Florida Master Naturalist Program
Director: Dr. Martin Main, Associate Professor
Coordinator: Ginger Allen, Senior Biologist
Southwest Florida Research & Education Center
2686 State Road 29 North
Immokalee, FL 34142-9515
Phone: 239-658-3400; Fax: 239-658-3469
FMNP Newsletter Staff
Editor: Dr. Martin Main
Managing Editor: Ginger Allen
Contributing Editor: Julie Carson
Web Coordinator: Buddy Walker
a UNIVERSITY OF