Saturday, September 22, 2018

Sea Turtle Release at Shell Point Beach 9/26 at 4pm

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Sea Turtle Release at Shell Point Beach 9/26 at 4 PM
Dear Friend of the Aquarium,

Gulf Specimen Marine Lab will be releasing some of our rehabilitation sea turtles back into the Gulf of Mexico Wednesday September 26th, at 4:00pm. One is a Kemp's Ridley sea turtle and one is a Green sea turtle. We will be down at Shell Point Beach to set our turtle friends back to their ocean journeys.
Here are some descriptions of the turtles we will be releasing:
Hi my name is Opal the Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtle. I was found right here locally on Mashes Sands Pier. I'm still a juvenile sea turtle, and luckily Gulf Specimen Marine Lab picked me up to take care of me after I swallowed a hook from a local fisherman! The scratches on my shell are because I was attacked by a shark! I can turn really fast because of my shell and I was able to escape him! I will be released Thursday along with my other turtle friends.
Hi my name is Jade. I am a juvenile Green Sea Turtle. I was accidentally caught in nets by local fishermen. Sadly, Jade got pneumonia due to water entering her lungs however she has responded well to antibiotics and has been cleared by Dr. Griggs at Shepherd Springs Animal Hospital to be released. It hasn't been a long time here at the lab, but it's been a good time. Now I'm headed back out into the ocean.
Directions to Shell Point Beach:
SR Hwy 319 south to Coastal hwy. right on SDR98 right on Shell Point Rd (CR-267) (blinking yellow light turn left Beaty Taff rd.

Cypress Rudloe
Executive Director

Friday, September 21, 2018

Texting and driving is dangerous, deadly and somehow still legal in Florida

 The next time you are driving through Wakulla County pay attention to the road, because a lot of other drivers aren't.

Wakulla County has the distinction of being the worst County for distracted driving in Florida.

There were 120 distracted driving-related crashes per 1,000 registered vehicles in Wakulla County —which is 45% greater than the Florida average of 83.

Walton County came in second followed by Orange County.

Overall there were 50,000 crashes in Florida involving distracted drivers in 2017, which is more than five crashes every hour .

Last year, distracted driving crashes accounted for more than 3,000 serious injuries and 220 fatalities.

Texting is one of the most dangerous driver distractions since it takes your eyes off the road, your hands off the wheel and your mind off of driving.

But texting is not the only distracted driving behavior; other dangerous driving distractions include putting on makeup, tending to children in the backseat, eating, tuning the radio, checking GPS navigation and even daydreaming.

Florida is one of only 4 states where Texting while driving is a secondary offense, meaning a person cannot be pulled over for it.

They can be ticketed for it if they are first pulled over for another violation.

This is the time of year that Florida’s black bears really start eating in preparation of winter

This is the time of year that Florida’s black bears really start eating in preparation of winter.

The bears will eat just about anything from berries, nuts, and fruit to insects.

But since they are trying to fatten up they’d rather have high calorie meals like your dog’s food or just about anything in your trash.

That means there is a much higher chance that a bear might be visiting your yard over the next few months.

You can minimize the chances of bears stopping at your house if you take a few simple steps like feeding your animals in a closed off area and not leaving dog food outside.

Bear proof trash cans are also available from local garbage companies, but if you don’t want to pay the extra cost you just need to keep your trash can in the garage or some other spot that bears can’t reach.

And there are always a few people who think its fun to actively feed bears, but in the long run that bad for the bear.

Bears are naturally shy, but if they lose their fear of humans the state will have to step in and either relocate the bear or in some cases euthanize it.

And it can be bad for the person doing the feeding because its illegal in Florida to leave out food or garbage that will attract bears and cause human-bear conflicts.

And remember if you have a nuisance bear or suspect that someone is feeding or attracting bears, please call the FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 1-888-404-FWCC.

Robinson Brothers reminds you - It's Fall Y'all!!

October is for Redfish!

Ready to catch some Redfish? Our "Beginning of Fall" weather in Apalachicola with its slightly cooler nights and sunny, warm, drier days, will ultimately lead to historically excellent fishing for Redfish and Speckled Trout. Morning low temps will be getting our local spotted tail population FIRED UP which has our inshore guides chomping at the bit. I won't bore you with too much detail but historically Late September, October and November are key months in Northwest Florida for Speckled Trout and Redfish along with quite a few other local species. Choose your weapon! Will you be casting a Fly at a tailing Redfish from the bow of a Flats Skiff? Blind - casting with live bait from a Bay Boat? Fishing Solo or bringing family, friends or co-workers? Fall fishing is some of the best of the year. Come on down & let us Hook you Up! (Call or go to our website to Book-It online) Link to Robinson Brothers Website

For my next trick, As soon as I get done with my RE Continuing Ed course, It's time to get busy scheduling for the 2019 fishing season both here and in Key West. As in past years, if you fished with us in 2018 you have first "Dibs" on your days next year and I will try to contact everyone by email. Please let me know ASAP if you do NOT plan to join us next year.

Check out the September 2018 issue of Southern Saltwater Fly Fishing E-zine. Capt. Chris Robinson appears in the Article "Slamming in Apalachicola" beginning on page 60. Link to SSFF Sept. 2018

Capt. Adam Hudson heads west to Louisiana next weekend for the next several months. His online calendar is currently up to date.

Robinson Brothers Trivia: Did you know that we have 7 Flats/Fly fishing guides and a dozen Bay Guides under the Robinson umbrella?

Congratulations to Capt. Grayson Shepard on his "Greatest Catch" Lindsay! Best Wishes!
Looking forward to hearing from you!

Kathy Robinson
Robinson Brothers Guide Service

Wakulla County Fire Rescue shows no deficiencies in recent inspection

Wakulla County Fire Rescue recently underwent an Emergency Medical Services State Inspection which resulted in an achievement of No Deficiencies, the highest rating available.
On August 24th, the Florida Department of Health, Bureau of Emergency Medical Services, conducted a thorough review of the Service Records and Personnel Records of Wakulla County Fire Rescue, as well as Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Inspections of Ambulances and Medical Equipment.
This review is conducted every two years on all EMS Providers in Florida.
Wakulla County Fire Rescue is a combination of Emergency Medical Services and Fire Services that is responsible for providing advance life support emergency patient transport, fire suppression, rescue, and vehicle extrication throughout Wakulla County.

In the past twelve months, the group responded to nearly 4200 calls for service.


FLO is a super cute, social and lovable Beagle. She has a happy and sweet temperament and at only 15 lbs, will make a wonderful pet for any size household. This little lady will be spayed soon and ready for her forever home!

We are always looking for people willing to bring one of our
animals into their home to be fostered for various needs. Anytime you
can spare would be greatly appreciated.

Call Karen at 670-8417 for more details or visit the Franklin County
Humane Society at 244 State Road 65 in Eastpoint. You may logon to
the website at to see more of our adoptable

Thursday, September 20, 2018

The Carrabelle history museum, the Camp Gordon Johnston World War 2 Museum and the Crooked River lighthouse are all taking part in the Smithsonian’s Museum Day on Saturday

This Saturday would be a great day to visit Carrabelle's three museums.

The Carrabelle history museum, the Camp Gordon Johnston World War 2 Museum and the Crooked River lighthouse are all taking part in the Smithsonian’s Museum Day on Saturday.

That means free admission all day and extended hours for all three sites.

The museums will be open from 10 am to 5 pm with special activities and exhibits including Camp Gordon Johnston’s WWII military vehicles, an exhibit on native peoples at the Carrabelle History Museum and tower climbs at the Crooked River Lighthouse.

Camp Gordon Johnston WWII Museum will also show Authentic Army training films taken throughout Franklin County during WWII.

Visitors to the Carrabelle History Museum can meet Ray Andersen, a local professional artist, who will be at the museum from 10:00 am-12:00 pm working on a beautiful, historical mural of Carrabelle's working waterfront circa 1880-1920.

In addition, the museum has a recently expanded exhibit showcasing local history of Native Peoples including a newly acquired Native American pottery artifact.

Also in keeping with this year’s Smithsonian theme of “Women Making History”, the Carrabelle History Museum will be featuring some notable women of Carrabelle including Tillie Miller, Laura Wiggins, Cheryl Sanders, and many others.

To take part in the event just download your Museum Day Live! tickets at

The Franklin County Commission gave final approval to its 2018-2019 budget Tuesday night

The Franklin County Commission gave final approval to its 2018-2019 budget Tuesday night.

The nearly 51 million dollar budget will take effect on October the 1st.

The new budget represents about a 1.8 percent tax increase over the current budget.

The amount that will be paid by local taxpayers is a little over 11.8 million dollars which is about a 335 thousand dollars more than last year.

Much of the local tax increase comes from a 3 percent across the board cost of living increase for county workers as well as a 7 percent increase in the cost of health insurance and in payments to the Florida retirement system.

The county also increased the sheriff's budget for needed repairs and upgrades to the county jail and provided some extra funding to the elections office for an upgrade to election system software .

The parks and recreation department also saw a small increase to its budget.

Under the new budget, people with a 150 thousand dollar home and a 50 thousand dollar homestead exemption will see their annual taxes increase by about 16 dollars in the coming year.

If you have a 100 thousand dollar home that is homesteaded you’ll pay about 12 dollars more in taxes.

Franklin County hopes to have the new oil collection containers around the county by the beginning of October.

Franklin County hopes to have the new oil collection containers around the county by the beginning of October.

The county was recently awarded a grant to handle the collection and disposal of used oil, the county recently purchased the containers needed so the public has a place to bring the oil.

The oil collection program will help protect the environment by giving people a place to dispose of their used oil and anti-freeze for free so they don't pour it out where it can leach into the groundwater or the Bay.

People can also dispose of their used oil and fuel filters in the same containers.

The county already accepts used oil for free at the landfill on Highway 65 but the board feels the program will be more successful if the collection bins are spread out across the county so people don't have to travel to Eastpoint just to dispose of their used oil.

The bins will be emptied once or twice a month by a contractor paid through the grant funds.

The bins will be located at the City Yard in Carrabelle, near Scipio Creek in Apalachicola and at Vrooman Park in Eastpoint.

NOAA Fisheries FishNews – September 19, 2018

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NOAA Fish News
September 19, 2018


NOAA Response to Florence
NOAA Responds to Hurricane FlorenceOur thoughts are with those dealing with the impacts of Hurricane Florence. NOAA’s National Weather Servicecautions that, while Florence has departed, rivers will rise further in the Carolinas for days to come as rainfall makes its way through regional river systems. NOAA’s National Geodetic Survey has started collecting aerial imagery to assess the damage in the storm’s aftermath. And NOAA Coast Survey’s navigation response teams are working to identify new navigational hazards and reopen ports.

Drew Lawler
NOAA Appoints New Deputy Assistant Secretary for International FisheriesNOAA announced the appointment of Drew Lawler as the new Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Fisheries. In this role, he will engage in high-level development and coordination of NOAA international fisheries policy and bilateral meetings. Mr. Lawler has a long career in international trade that includes a focus on saltwater sportfishing.

Shortfin Mako
Shortfin Mako Rule – Extended Comment Period
By October 8 (formerly October 1), please submit your comments on a proposed rule and Draft Amendment 11 to the 2006 Consolidated Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan. The proposed amendment aims to end overfishing of shortfin mako sharks and to rebuild their populations. 

Removing crab traps
Marine Debris Removal Grants – Call for ProposalsThe NOAA Marine Debris Program announced its FY 2019 Marine Debris Removal federal funding opportunity. Awarded projects will prioritize the removal of derelict fishing gear and other medium- and large-scale debris to improve habitat and foster public awareness of marine debris impacts. Proposals are due October 29.

West Coast

Pacific Groundfish Measures – Open for CommentBy October 19, please submit your comments on proposed harvest specifications for the 2019–2020 Pacific Coast groundfish fishery. In 2017, after years of low harvest levels, three previously-overfished stocks of rockfish were declared rebuilt. The proposed measures will increase commercial and recreational fishing opportunities while ensuring sustainable harvest into the future.

Pacific Salmon Treaty
Pacific Salmon Treaty Renewal 2018The Pacific Salmon Commission has reached an agreement on conservation and harvest sharing of Pacific salmon, thereby continuing the longstanding cooperative management partnership between the United States and Canada. The Commission’s new agreement recommends reduced harvest of Chinook salmon in both countries to reduce fishery impacts on natural Chinook stocks and to complement recovery efforts.

Forest Service Plan
Forest Service’s Revised Forest Plans Protect FishAn updated blueprint for the management of 5.5 million acres of public land in the Blue Mountains of eastern Oregon and southeastern Washington prioritizes habitat restoration for threatened salmon and steelhead where the fish need it most, thus boosting their chances for recovery in coming decades.

Pacific Islands

Hatchery mullets
Hatchery-Born Mullets for Hawaiian Fish Ponds
Ancient Hawaiians developed fishponds as a kind of natural refrigerator to trap and store mullet and other fish. A new NOAA Fisheries–funded project aims to help these traditional fishponds increase production and become economically sustainable. Three fishponds will receive hatchery-born mullets to raise experimentally, providing valuable data on how different factors affect the growth rate and health of fish. 

Hawaii Ecosystem
Proposed Ecosystem Components Rule  Open for Public Comment
By October 29, please submit your comments on NOAA Fisheries’ proposal to reclassify management unit species in America Samoa, Hawaii, and the Mariana Islands as ecosystem components. This proposed rule is intended to create a more effective federal management system for Pacific Island fisheries by prioritizing conservation and management resources toward those species caught in federal waters that are in the most need.  


Mississippi Trustees Update
Mississippi Trustees Announce Changes to Early Restoration ProjectThe Mississippi Trustee Implementation Group for the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment announced changes to an early restoration project approved in 2015. The Trustees canceled three of the eight components of the Restoring Living Shorelines and Reefs in Mississippi Estuaries project after determining that they are not feasible at this time. The five remaining project components will move forward.

Alabama restoration
Alabama Releases Second Restoration PlanThe Alabama Trustee Implementation Group for the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment approved its second Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment to address natural resource injuries from the oil spill. Read more about the plan’s restoration priorities and the steps leading up to its release. 

Greater Atlantic

Bloede Dam
Video: Blowing up Maryland’s Bloede DamFollowing the recent Bloede Dam removal kickoff, NOAA and project partners took the most important and exciting step needed to begin opening up the Patapsco River: breaching the giant structure with explosives to allow the river to pass. Over the coming weeks, construction will continue on the remaining portion of the dam, removing it piece by piece with heavy equipment.

Sebasticook fish
River Restoration: Finding the Next SebasticookRestoring the Sebasticook River, a smaller tributary to the Kennebec River, yielded historic river herring runs, bringing back fish, eagles, and revenue to the region. While NOAA continues to focus our efforts on restoring major East Coast rivers, we are also looking at the huge restoration potential of smaller rivers that feed these major water bodies.


September 20
Free Atlantic Shark Identification workshop in Panama City Beach, Florida.
September 24–27
Seven public hearings for the Summer Flounder Commercial Issues Amendment, hosted by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council.
September 24–27
New England Fishery Management Council meeting in Plymouth, Massachusetts.
September 25
Public hearing webinar on Draft Addendum V to the Atlantic Coastal Sharks Interstate Fishery Management Plan, hosted by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission.
September 30–October 5 Rescheduled South Atlantic Fishery Management Council meeting in Charleston, South Carolina.
October 1 and 4
Two free Protected Species Safe Handling, Identification, and Release workshops in New Jersey and Florida.
October 1–9
North Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting in Anchorage.
October 2–4
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council meeting in Cape May, New Jersey.
October 4–November 9
Top NOAA leaders will conduct public conferences around the nation about the Department of Commerce 2018–2022 Strategic Plan.
October 18
Free Atlantic Shark Identification workshop in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.
October 22–25
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council meeting in Mobile, Alabama.
October 23–24
Western Pacific Fishery Management Councilmeeting in Saipan, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
October 26–27
Western Pacific Fishery Management Councilmeeting in Tumon, Guam.
November 13–16
United States–Japan Natural Resources Panel on Aquaculture Scientific Symposium in Mystic, Connecticut.


September 20
Proposals due for the 2019–2021 Atlantic Herring Research Set-Aside Program.
October 1
Proposals due for the 2019–2020 Atlantic Sea Scallop Research Set-Aside Program.
October 1
Nominations due for advisors to the U.S. Section to the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT).
October 1
Applications due for groundfish sector at-sea monitor providers for fishing years 2019 and 2020.
October 29
Proposals due for 2019 Community-Based Marine Debris Removal grants.
October 30
Applications due for 2019 Species Recovery Grants to Tribes.
October 31
Proposals due for funding to document the distribution of surfclams in the U.S. Northwest Atlantic.
November 1
Applications due for 2019 Species Recovery Grants to States.

Federal Register Actions

Visit for a list of only those actions open for public comment. Scroll search for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
For a list of all daily actions, check the Federal Registeronline.

Corrections or technical questions should be sent to the FishNews Editor at