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Christmas bird counts needs bird-watchers

News and notes from Hernando County
Hernando County community news [Tara McCarty]
Hernando County community news [Tara McCarty]
Published Dec. 9, 2019


Hog hunt permits will be available online

Southwest Florida Water Management District is hosting a series of hunts to help reduce the feral hog population. The district has a three-phase hunting system. The first phase is underway; registration for the second phase will begin at 9 a.m. Dec. 17, to participate in six hunts that will be held in January and February.

The single top producer from each Phase 1 and Phase 2 hunt will be asked to participate in as-needed hog management activities for Phase 3, which may occur between March and October 2020. All hunts adhere to the hog-dog format. No still hunts will be available.

The district-managed properties will be temporarily closed to the public during the hog hunts. Only permitted hunters will be allowed access. To register, visit Permits will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. The cost is $75. For information, call (813) 985-7481.

Students can enter ‘Americanism’ poster contest

The National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution is sponsoring an Elementary School Americanism Poster contest. The Withlacoochee Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution invites students in the third, fourth and fifth grades who are interested in the history of the American Revolution to participate.

The contest is open to all public, parochial and private schools, as well as home-schooled students. The theme for 2019-2020 is “The Battle of Thomas Creek.”

Posters for the chapter level may be submitted through March 30; cash awards will be offered at each level of the contest. For further details, contact Larry Sturgeon at (352) 688-2947 or email

Christmas bird counts scheduled

Hernando Audubon Society is holding its two annual Christmas Bird Counts in Hernando County:

• The Brooksville Christmas Bird Count will be Dec. 14, with volunteers counting the quantity and variety of bird species within a circle with a 7.5-mile radius from Bystre Lake. To be assigned to a team or for information, contact Linda at (352) 428-2629 or

• The Aripeka-Bayport Christmas Bird Count will be Dec. 23 and will count all the birds from Pine Island in Hernando County to Crews Lake in Pasco County. For details or to be assigned to a team, contact Bev at (352) 686-0460 or


Weight loss challenge kicks off soon

The Community Health Improvement Plan Partnership will kick off its Great Hernando Weight Loss Challenge from 9 a.m. to noon Jan. 11 at the Hernando County Mining Association Enrichment Center, 800 John Gary Grubbs Blvd.

Health-related vendors are invited to participate at the kick-off event. Vendors must have a focus on helping participants toward their goal of losing 100 pounds in 10 weeks. The cost for vendors is $25 for a 10-foot by 10-foot space. The application deadline is 5 p.m. Jan. 6.

To apply to become a vendor, contact Shirley Anderson at or call (352) 540-6309.

Residents interested in participating in the challenge can pre-register before Jan. 6. For details, visit the Great Hernando Weight Loss Challenge Facebook page or contact Ann-Gayl Ellis at


Crafters wanted for church fair

St. Joan of Arc Columbiettes will host a Craft and Vendor Fair from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 22 in the parish hall at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church, 13485 Spring Hill Drive. The cost for vendors and crafters is $20 for an 8-foot table. For details and applications, contact Christie at or call (412) 266-2600.


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  7. ALICE HERDEN | Special to the Times
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