Mosquitos swarmed and sweat soaked them but two bridges now enhance the Natural Pine Forest trail off the Dixie Mainline. Refuge Ranger Jason Coates, Matthew Usry, Refuge forestry intern, Aiden Horne, Youth Conservation Corps volunteer, and Friends board member Debbie Meeks installed them last week.
This new trail is described in the Friends brochure Hiking Trails Along the Dixie Mainline.
Greg Lang, a long-time Friends member and a former president of the Board, is getting ready for the cooler weather, and the hunting season, to come. Like many others, he is scouting hunting areas and thinking ahead to autumn days on the Refuge. But thoughts of autumn hunting don't keep the hearty enthusiast of wild places, or his friends, from enjoying the incredible Refuges right now in all their summertime glory.
The North Florida Refuge Complex's Friends groups were well represented at the Ding Darling Peer to Peer Training workshop on Sanibel Island. Dan Frisk, the Complex Manager, Sheila Frisk from the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge and Friends Mary Smallwood from the St. Marks NWR, Debbie Meeks and Mackenzie Russell of the Lower Suwannee and Cedar Keys NWR and Jim Hughes from the St. Vincent Island NWR listened to top quality speakers and swapped tips with other Friends members over two days. Fundraising, social media, press releases, and team building were some of the topics covered.
Mackenzie and Debbie will report what they learned at the June 21 board meeting at 10 am at Refuge Headquarters. All welcome.