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Your chance to Have a say on Florida Keys Marine Conservation
This June, NOAA, the Florida DEP and the USFWS are gathering public input on rules for the Florida Keys National Wildlife Sanctuary, the Key West National Wildlife Refuge and the Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuge. The Sanctuary’s focus is its’ zoning and boundary plan  which includes areas such the Ecological Preserves and Sanctuary Preservation Areas but the public can make recommendations on other issues related to it management and regulation.This is your opportunity to have a say in the future management and regulation of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and the backcountry management of the Florida Keys by the USFWS. Public comments are being accepted Through June 29, 2012. Comments may be submitted electronically and via mail, and during five public meetings.
Public Meetings
All meeting will ne held 4:00pm-8:00pm
June 19: Marathom, FL; Monroe County Government Center; Emergency Operations Center
June 20: Key Largo, FL; Key Largo Library
June 21: Key West, FL; Doubletree Grand Key Resort; Tortuga Ballroom
June 26: Miami, FL; Florida Internationl University; Graham University Center; room GC243
June 27: Fort Myers, FL; Joseph P. Alessandro Office Complex; Room 165C and D
For more information visit: floridakeys.noaa.gov
The Nature Conservancy (TNC), Save-A-Turtle, Friends and Volunteers of Refuges (FAVOR) and Reef Relief are hosting open meetings about the public scoping process, timing and opportunities to add your input in the regulatory review process.
Informational Meeting Date:
Key West – May 10, 2012 at 6:30pm at the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center, 35 East Quay road, Key West. Hosted by TNC and Reef Relief.
For more information contact Chris Bergh at the Nature Conservancy’s Florida Keys office at 305-872-7071 or [email protected]
Click the photo for more information and registration form
 
Coral Camp 2012 is Filling Up Fast
This summer children 6-12 years of age have a chance to explore and learn about our surrounding marine environment through exciting, educational activities at the Reef Relief Environmental Center in Key West. Each fun-packed day, campers will experience hands-on learning, interactive games, group activities, and state of- the-art videos of life at the amazing living coral reef. Reef Relief staff and interns guide daily field trips including 3 days of snorkeling, a tour of marine life at the Key West Aquarium, lessons about birds at he Key West Wildlife Center, a scavengerhunt at the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center, plus an interpretive shoreline walk. Nine weeks of week long  sessions are open for registration beginning June 11th through August 17th, 2012. Sessions are limited to 25 campers per session, so sign up now! Camp will run from 8:30am-4:30pm Monday through Friday. Please arrange transportation to and from Reef Relief each day. Camp fees are $215 per child per week or $370 for two or more weeks.
A Kemp’s ridley sea turtle hatchling
Photo courtesy of Fish & Wildlife Commission
 
The Sea Turtles are Back
The Florida  Keys and Florida are fortunate to have five species of sea turtles in our waters, the loggerhead, green, leatherback, hawksbill and Kemp’s ridley sea turtle. All five of these species are considered to be threatened or endangered.
Starting in the middle of April   until October sea turtles will be crawling ashore to dig their nests and lay eggs. Typically the sea turtles will lay about about 100 egg which they will cover with sand before returning to the water.  In two months the baby turtles will hatch and make their way to the water guided by the light of the moon. Lights from homes, businesses or roadways can interfere with their journey.
In Florida sea turtle nesting and hatching is monitored by volunteers, and scientists who walk our shores every day to document nesting locations, species and hatching. To learn more visit Save-A-Turtle at http://save-a-turtle.org/.
If you wish to report a sick, injured, or dead marine turtle in the state of Florida, please call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission at 1-888-404-FWCC (3922).
Thanks to everyone at A.B.C.Supplies Inc.
April 18th, 2012- Employees from ABC Supply Inc. and Reef Relief cleaned up mangroves at Little Hamaca Park in Key West. The 121 volunteers removed an amazing 2492lbs of debris from the park.
If you know a shoreline site in the Florida Keys  in need of a cleanup please contact Reef Relief with details at 305-294-3100 or [email protected] Lets cleanup up our shores!
Make a donation today by clicking the donate button or
– Join online by clicking the donate now button or go to www.reefrelief.org/act/donate/
– Join by calling Reef Relief at 305-294-3100
– Mail your donation to: Reef Relief P.O. Box 430, Key West, FL 33040
– Or visit Reef Relief’s Environmental Center at 631 Greene St. in Key West
P.O. Box 430 | Key West, FL 33041-0430 US