Florida Fish and Wildlife Invites You To help Raise Awareness of Gopher Tortoise Day On April 10
By Space Coast Daily // March 17, 2017
Gopher tortoises in all 67 FLORIDA counties
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission invites you to help raise awareness of the gopher tortoise by hosting a Gopher Tortoise Day event in your community.
The gopher tortoise is state listed as threatened in Florida with a population that has declined more than 50 percent over the last 100 years.
Gopher tortoises occur in all 67 counties throughout Florida, but many people aren’t aware of its role as a keystone species and the refuge its burrow provides for more than 360 commensals.
Your event can be as small or as large as you want. Any way you choose to celebrate is great.
Here are some ideas that can be easily implemented in your city or neighborhood
• Attend or organize a wildlife appreciation festival
• Organize a volunteer day at a local park
• Organize activities for kids at school or after-school programs
• Help make your neighborhood a Tortoise-wise Community
Visit GopherTortoiseDayFL.com for more information on events, and to access educational materials and DIY hands on activities.
FINDING A VENUE
Contact a local nature center to ask about hosting an event at their facility, or ask to join an existing event.
Can’t find a venue? No problem. Become a citizen scientist by inviting friends and family to search for gopher tortoises in your neighborhood, local park or natural areas.
You can document gopher tortoise sightings using the “Florida Gopher Tortoise” smartphone app, available for iPhone and Android. Remember, take only pictures and leave nothing but footprints!
DECIDING ON A DATE
Let everyone know that April 10 is Gopher Tortoise Day. Various events will occur on the weekend closest to April 10, but it’s never too early or too late to celebrate.
If you have questions about Gopher Tortoise Day, hosting an event, or adopting a resolution, please contact the Gopher Tortoise Education and Outreach Coordinator at Theresa.Dash@MyFWC.com or call (850) 921–1025.
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