Risky bacteria levels found at parkway beach
The Pinellas County Health Department issued an advisory to swimmers Friday after finding high bacteria counts in the bay water at the Courtney Campbell Parkway beach. The advisory states, "This area should be considered a potential health risk to swimmers." The Health Department conducts saltwater beach testing through the Healthy Beaches Monitoring Program. Water samples are analyzed for enteric bacteria that normally inhabit the intestinal tracts of humans and animals and which may cause human diseases, infections or rashes. The presence of enteric bacteria is an indication of fecal pollution, which may come from stormwater runoff, pets, wildlife or sewage. Results from tests conducted Wednesday showed that the water quality was poor at the Courtney Campbell beach. The department will sample the water again on Jan. 7 to determine whether it is safe for swimming.
Recycling a tree? Here's what to do
Residents of Pinellas County cities that do not offer tree recycling, as well as residents living in unincorporated Pinellas County, can recycle a tree by dropping it off at Pinellas County Solid Waste, 3095 114th Ave. N., St. Petersburg. The cost is $3 per load for a maximum of five trees. The cost for six or more trees is $37.50 per ton. Hours are 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. Pinellas cities that do not offer tree recycling include Belleair Beach, Belleair Bluffs, Belleair Shore, Indian Shores, Kenneth City, North Redington Beach, Redington Beach, Redington Shores, Seminole, South Pasadena and St. Pete Beach.
Hikes at preserve to continue in 2013
The popular Saturday hikes at Brooker Creek Preserve will continue in 2013. On Jan. 5 and 19, volunteer guides will lead groups of hikers to see how the land has changed over time and the ecological footprints left by those changes. Closed-toe shoes, water and a hat are recommended for the 90-minute, 0.75-mile walk beginning at 9 a.m. On Jan. 26, trained volunteer guides will conduct an extended 2.8- to 4-mile walk from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult; those younger than 10 may find the hikes challenging. Brooker Creek Preserve protects more than 8,700 acres of natural ecosystems and is located at 3940 Keystone Road.
A photograph in Friday's Clearwater & North Pinellas Times incorrectly identified Tarpon Springs Vice Mayor Chris Alahouzos and St. Petersburg College-Tarpon Springs provost Conferlete Carney.