The Audubon online magazine has an excellent summary of the story of the Seahorse Key rookery abandonment. It provides the up-to-date information on possible and likely causes.
The Natural Resources Defense Council posted a CSI story about the Seahorse Key rookery abandonment in its magazine onEarth. Thanks NRDC and all the other organizations, agencies, and media from the members of the Friends of the Lower Suwannee & Cedar Keys NWRs. We greatly appreciate your attention to the importance and value of protecting the refuge that protects the birds and their habitat.
Meanwhile, those of us who live here in the backyard of the refuges even in the summertime are enjoying their beauty as much as the media are enjoying their mystery.
Since April, our Refuge Update page has been reporting on the disappearance of the birds from Seahorse Key. In June, the Friends News Brief mentioned it and several readers sent theories and tips about the possible cause. The Refuge staff appreciates those and is following up on them.
The Gainesville Sun recently carried a story about mystery. An Associated Press reporter came and interviewed Refuge staff about it and the story was placed on AP wire on July 7. The same day, the Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC had a 4-minute segment about the story.
Here are links to several stories about the abandonment. Many are based on the Associated Press report:
Below is a link to a story that ran in 2010 and provides background about the rookery and its inhabitants.
National Geographic (link is no longer available)
We will keep you posted as new clues arise and data are gathered.
Need information? Refuge Manager Andrew Gude can be reached by text or phone at 703.622.3896.
From the Refuge Manager: On Monday, July 15, an official period Public Comment opened regarding an increase in hunt fees for the 2020-2021 hunt season on the Lower Suwannee NWR. Please provide your input.
The print version of the 2019-2020 Hunt Regulations Brochure is now available at Refuge headquarters. For an digital version,
The Refuge is open daily from dawn to dusk.
Visitors are welcome to walk or bicycle around yellow Refuge gates.
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