Dear Friends,

I hope you and your family are remaining safe and healthy. We are starting to hit our stride again here in the seashore, as most facilities, including the Apollo Visitor Center, are open again. We had a successful International Coastal Cleanup using the Clean Swell app, and if you haven’t checked it out, you can have some fun doing your own beach clean-ups and record the data any time.

We lost one of our friends this past month, Bob Dewar was a Friend of Canaveral as well as a local New Smyrna Beach business owner, retired submariner, and a lover of fun and humor. Bob was a past president of Friends of Canaveral, he and his wife Joyce were at many a fundraiser, food platters in hand. His spark has been missed during his lengthy illness, and I will always remember him fondly for his smile that was both mischievous and genuine. 

Thank you to all of the Friends and Volunteers-In-Parks for all you do.  

See you at the beach!
Laura Henning
Bob Dewer
New Turtle Mound Boardwalk Open
Morning dew reveals the footprints of a raccoon walking along the handrail of the new Turtle Mound boardwalk.
(Photo credit: Valerie Stanley)
A relaxing pergola is a welcome addition to the top of the new boardwalk on
Turtle Mound.
 (Photo credit: Valerie Stanley)
For thousands of years, indigenous people lived and occupied coastal Florida. They seasonally harvested oysters and clams from the bountiful waters. As they shucked the shellfish, they left the debris behind in huge piles, called middens. Time passed: explorers and settlers came, Florida gained statehood, agriculture and tourism changed the landscape. Many of the middens that silently testified to long-lost cultures were plundered to be used in the establishment of railway and roadbeds. Turtle Mound is one of the few remaining Timucuan Indian shell middens. It is protected in Canaveral National Seashore’s Apollo District.

After more than a year of construction, the new boardwalk ascending to the top of Turtle Mound is open. Visitors can once again view this ancient site from the comfort and safety of a gradually inclining walkway as it meanders through the shrubs, trees, and vines that have taken root on this midden. One new feature of this boardwalk is a pergola located at the T-intersection between the north and south vistas. This rest stop offers benches and a little shade while not obstructing any of the spectacular views. Additionally, some vegetation has been trimmed back to allow visitors the opportunity to more clearly appreciate both the height and visual composition of the midden. The panoramic view is not to be missed! If you come at sunrise, you will see the ephemeral moonflowers and hear the birds and beach awaken. If you arrive at sunset, plan to linger for a while over the colors of the changing sky. Sunset is breathtaking! For generations, people have found Turtle Mound to be a place of timeless tranquility. Plan to experience it soon. 

Valerie Stanley, Canaveral National Seashore
Sea Turtle Nesting #'s
2020 Sea Turtle Nest Counts (9/18/20)

• Loggerhead (Caretta caretta):
  • Apollo ( 1758 ) .......... Playalinda ( 2429 )
• Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas):
  • Apollo ( 1335 ) .......... Playalinda ( 2365 )
• Leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea):
  • Apollo ( 11 ) .......... Playalinda ( 15 )
• Kemps Ridley (Lepidochelys kempii):
  • Apollo ( 0 ) .......... Playalinda ( 5 )

Total Nest Counts: 7,918
10th Annual New Smyrna Beach Plein Air Paint Out
October 21-24, 2020

The 10th annual Plein Air Paint Out is set for Oct. 21-24, and will once again be hosted by the Marine Discovery Center and the Artists’ Workshop, Inc., NSB.
This event combines art and nature when 21 nationally recognized artists travel to New Smyrna Beach to create outdoor paintings from dawn to dusk. Artists paint at various locations throughout the city and surrounding areas, interpreting natural flora, fauna, landmarks and landscapes onto canvas.

There will be several changes at this year’s event, due to Covid-19. The Paint Out originally was held over six days, but it will be staged over four days this year.
In addition, organizers have designed different socially distanced ways for art enthusiasts to view and purchase pieces of art created and displayed throughout the week in the gallery at the shared MDC/Artists’ Workshop location at 540 Barracuda Boulevard in New Smyrna Beach.
Adult Florida cicada by
James Shelton 
The sound of cicadas fills the air on summer days in Florida. Though different species are heard at various times from spring through fall, the common name “dog-day” cicada captures the connection of the loud, buzzy song and long, hot summer days. “Keys cicada,” “hieroglyphic cicada,” “swamp cicada,” “resonant cicada” and “scissor-grinder cicada” are descriptive names for some of the 19 Florida species inspired by the sound, appearance or habitat of these insects. 
Florida cicadas are not the periodical species (Magicicada) that appear in huge numbers every 13 to 17 years in other regions. In our state there are adult cicadas emerging every year. The exact timing of the life cycle of our various species isn’t known, but all cicada nymphs live underground for years, feeding on sap from the roots of grasses or woody plants, and molt several times. When they are ready for their final molt they emerge, shed their outer skeleton and become adults. These are the shells you might find on trees or the stems of plants, sometimes in large numbers. 
The buzzing song of cicadas is produced by structures called timbals, along the sides of their bodies, that vibrate as they pop in and out. Males are calling with this sound to attract a mate; they can also produce a squawking sound to startle predators. 
Cicadas emerging in massive numbers have been confused with locusts, a type of swarming grasshopper, that eat leaves and destroy plants. But unlike the locusts, most adult cicadas live in trees where they feed on the xylem sap. Adult cicadas don’t bite or sting and live just a few weeks; they are part of Nature’s intricate food web, providing food for small mammals, birds and other insects.  
Thanks to UF IFAS Entomology and Nematology for information for this article. 
Mass bird die-off
The southwestern states of the U.S. have experienced extremely dry conditions – believed to be related to the climate crisis – meaning there could be fewer insects, the main food source for migrating birds. A cold snap locally between September 9 and 10 could have also worsened conditions for the birds.
Southwest experiences mass bird die-off

This story was originally published by the Guardian and is republished here through the Climate Desk partnership. Thousands of migrating birds have inexplicably died in southwestern U.S. in what ornithologists have described as a national tragedy ...

Read more
If you suspect a fish, wildlife, boating, or environmental law violation, report it to the FWC's Wildlife Alert Reward Program: 888-404-FWCC (3922).
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