ASK A DOC: Checkups?

BY DR. RAYMOND JAMES, D.O. Doubtful David recently asked me, “Do I really need to see you every year for a checkup if I feel good?”  His question was especially pertinent, since he had skipped his annual physical last year due to the pandemic. He had gained weight like many have during the change in […]

This date in the Boca Beacon …

Boca Beacon backpages FIVE YEARS AGO A 2002 Glacier Bay named La Pirate was missing, and everyone was on the lookout. The new boardwalk officially opened at Gasparilla Island State Park. TEN YEARS AGO Boaters, boarders, swimmers and paddle boarders were keeping a close eye on several pieces of metal rebar sticking out of the […]

DOG LIFE: Dog training books, DVDs and the internet

Some people will invest in books or DVD’s or go online to learn about training methods, and nice try, but that’s useless. They’ll learn generic methods that sometimes work but most of the time don’t. Why? The books or DVD’s don’t take into account your dog’s age, sex, breed, environment, character and temperament. The books and DVD’s are not designed to tell you which method would be suitable for your particular dog. Every dog is different, and lots of variables play a role in it. Maybe you have a dog that is shy, timid, fearful, or dominant or dominant-aggressive, and the list goes on … A professional trainer can asses which training method and/or sequence would be best. Books and DVD’s can’t.  They can give only broad generalizations. I can’t say often enough that owners MUST take the time to work with their dogs daily and follow the trainer’s instructions. 

ECOWATCH: Dragonflies joining butterflies on flight to extinction

The December report listed the reason for the dragonfly joining the list of threatened species as follows: “The destruction of wetlands is driving the decline of dragonflies worldwide … Their decline is symptomatic of the widespread loss of marshes, swamps and free-flowing rivers they breed in, mostly driven by the expansion of unsustainable agriculture and urbanization around the world.”

Turtle Tracks: August 7, 2022

“We received a hotline report of a turtle nesting during the day, and it just so happened to be Flame Lily. This rare daytime encounter provided a clear look at this turtle and heightened our suspicions that she might be a hybrid,” said Kelly Sloan, coastal wildlife director and sea turtle program coordinator. New genetic results from the University of Georgia’s Dr. Brian Shamblin confirm that Flame Lily is in fact half hawksbill, half loggerhead. Flame Lily’s first nest last year produced 104 hatchlings.



TURTLE TRACKS: A rare wonder found on a Boca Grande beach

This week on turtle patrol, a Boca Grande Sea Turtle Association patrol volunteer was stunned to discover a very unusual hatchling. On rare occasion, an anomaly such as this poses a unique challenge for the sea turtle permit holder. The permit holder is solely responsible for the livelihood of each and every sea turtle, from nesting adult females to unhatched incubating eggs. Hatchlings require careful treatment and monitoring. It is unlawful to interfere, disturb, transport, photograph, and handle sea turtle hatchlings without a permit.

ECOWATCH: Migratory monarch butterfly: going, going … gone?

Like so many species on this list, which have been on this planet for eons, the endangered migratory monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) has an ancestry that dates back about two million years. Now this species is threatened by habitat destruction, increased use of herbicides and pesticides in homes and commercial agricultural sites, illegal logging of the forests where they spend the winters, and by other factors during their migration to and from wintering sites.

TURTLE TRACKS: All that data collecting must be tiring

Monitoring of sea turtle nesting activity is done through two separate programs: the Statewide Nesting Beach Survey and the Index Nesting Beach Survey. Managers use the results to evaluate and minimize the effects of human activities (e.g., coastal construction, seawalls, beach renourishment and recreation) on turtles and their nests and identify important areas for enhanced protection or land acquisition.