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Going green

  1. Romano: State agency plays bully when it doesn't get its way in Florida

    Environment

    Here's an interesting story about a government agency in action.

  2. Why does he still go outside? Florida man survives lightning strike, spider, snake bites

    Environment

    LAKELAND — Kyle Cook can't decide whether he's really unlucky or incredibly fortunate.

    Kyle Cook, 31, has taken on lightning, a venomous spider and an alligator and lived to talk about it all.
  3. Contamination returns to Hudson Beach water

    Water

    UPDATE: The state Health Department on Thursday lifted its health advisory for swimmers at Robert J. Strickland Memorial Park at Hudson Beach, saying further testing indicated a drop in fecal bacteria.

    Hudson Beach is again closed to swimmers after state Health Department water tests revealed high bacteria levels. It is the first health advisory for the beach since October 2015.
  4. Pinellas County workers erroneously poisoned 74 sabal palmetto trees in Joe's Creek

    Environment

    ST. PETERSBURG — When four trees had to be removed in March for maintenance purposes, two Pinellas County workers sprayed the sabal palmetto trees with a herbicide.

    The dead sabal palmetto trees that line Joe's Creek between Jacaranda Manor and Brookside Mobile Home Park at 4150 66th St. N in St. Petersburg. In March, two Pinellas County workers tasked with removing four trees in March ended up erroneously spraying poison on an additional 74 trees for maintenance purposes but without consulting a supervisor. The incident is now being investigated the Florida Department of Agriculture because of the chemicals sprayed near water. It also spurred Pinellas County to tighten rules allowing its employees to kill trees. [DIRK SHADD   |   Times]
  5. It looks like a googly-eyed cartoon octopus. Here's what that adorable sea creature really is

    Wildlife

    Scientists manning the exploration vessel Nautilus and its remotely operated vehicles spotted something truly adorable recently: Just off the coast of California, hanging out 3,000 feet below the surface, they saw what looked to be a googly-eyed cartoon octopus.

    This adorable critter is called Rossia pacifica, but it's more commonly known as the stubby squid. It's most closely related to the cuttlefish. [Exploration Trust]
  6. Florida wildlife officials: Please stop painting the animals

    Wildlife

    It's a warning Floridians are used to hearing: Don't touch the animals.

    The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission also found a painted ibis, which isn't as common as finding a painted turtle but still a concern. (Photos by Officer Amy Moore and Carol Lyn Parrish, FWC)
  7. Cuban scientists tour Florida Aquarium as part of coral collaboration

    Water

    TAMPA

    Three Cuban men strolling the Florida Aquarium on Monday blended in with hundreds of others visiting the downtown attraction.

    Shawn Garner, left, a Florida Aquarium biologist, shows staghorn coral Monday to Hanzel Caballero, center, and Alexis Fernandez Osoria, representatives from the National Aquarium in Havana, who are in Tampa for a research partnership.
  8. Advocates of gulf oil-drilling ban worried by talks with Cuba

    Water

    Progress in international talks over who owns a piece of the Gulf of Mexico has raised the specter of a Deepwater Horizon tragedy along local shores.

    A Petroleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico near the shores of Campeche. [Eunice Adorno/AFP/Getty Images (2006)]
  9. USF study: Water from deep in gulf may keep away red tide

    Water

    TAMPA — Beaches in the bay area may seem a little more pleasant next summer with fewer dead fish and more tourists lying on the shore.

    Dead fish, the result of a toxic Red Tide bloom, washed up just north of Johns Pass in Madeira Beach in April.
  10. Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary stays open amid family's court fight over its future

    Wildlife

    With a court hearing set for next week on the dispute between its founder and his children , the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary has become a battleground.

    A non resident pelican hangs out at the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary on Wednesday. Ralph Heath Jr. founded the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary in Indian Shores in 1971 and built it into the largest nonprofit wild bird hospital and sanctuary in the United States. But now his children are suing him and fighting him for legal control of the sanctuary. Volunteer Eddie Gayton currently operates the sanctuary for Heath's son. [JIM DAMASKE   |   Times]