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Going green

  1. Pasco to test weekly curbside recycling

    Environment

    DADE CITY — An overwhelming number of Pasco residents want weekly curbside recycling, according to a county survey, but nearly half don't want to give up their twice-a-week trash pickups as a trade-off.

    Newspapers and mixed papers float to the ground to be bailed for recycling at Progressive Waste Solutions, St. Petersburg, where Pasco County sends its materials for recycling. TIMES files (2014)
  2. Video: Deputy wrestles feisty alligator

    Wildlife

    MACON, Ga. — An alligator has been apprehended at a park in central Georgia after a sheriff's deputy wrestled the creature.

  3. Catch a Florida python, win a T-shirt

    Wildlife

    They tried hiring professionals. They tried training people to compete in a big roundup. They even brought in tribesmen from India.

    The state has announced the Python Pickup Program, which rewards  participants with T-shirts and other prizes if they find and kill a Burmese python in the wild. The pythons are an invasive species that have wiped out large numbers of small animals in the Everglades.
  4. USF scientists headed for Cuba to study what it looks like before any oil spills

    Water

    ST. PETERSBURG — Florida scientists will ride their research vessel to Cuba next month to take measurements of its coastal waters before any oil spill ruins them.

    The University of South Florida research vessel the RV Weatherbird II and its crew will head to Cuba to study what the Gulf of Mexico looked like before the 2010 BP oil spill disaster. They'll set sail May 9 and work with Cuban scientists. [SCOTT KEELER, Times]
  5. Vanishing ocean floor in the Florida Keys worsens risks from sea rise, study finds

    Wetlands

    If sea rise weren't scary enough, scientists have now found another phenomenon threatening the Florida Keys and other coasts protected by reefs: a vanishing ocean floor.

    A diver explores coral in John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. Scientists say the sea floor in parts of the region has eroded over the last eight decades. (Miami Herald)
  6. Deepwater Horizon: Seven years after explosion and oil spill, study finds cleanup workers got sicker

    Environment

    On the seventh anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, the health impacts that the spewing oil had on the people who came into contact with it are still raising questions about how the cleanup was handled.

    A Brown Pelican tries to raise its wings as it sits on the beach at East Grand Terre Island along the Louisiana coast after being drenched in oil from the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in June 2010. An April 20, 2010 explosion at the offshore platform killed 11 men, and the subsequent leak released an estimated 172 million gallons of petroleum into the gulf. [Associated Press]
  7. It's an orca! Last killer whale is born at a SeaWorld park

    Wildlife

    MIAMI — The last orca has been born in captivity at a SeaWorld park in San Antonio just over a year after the theme park decided to stop breeding orcas following animal rights protests and declining ticket sales.

    Orca Takara helps guide her newborn to the water's surface at SeaWorld San Antonio, Wednesday, April 19, 2017, in San Antonio. The company based in Orlando, Fla., announced the birth Wednesday. [Chris Gotshall | SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment via AP]
  8. No new Florida bear hunts until 2019, wildlife commission says, citing public opinion

    Wildlife

    Florida will not hold another bear hunt until at least 2019, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission decided Wednesday.

    Richard Sajko of Valrico talks about how he killed one of the two bears on the back of his pickup truck in 2015 during the first Florida Black Bear hunt in 21 years at the Rock Springs Run Wildlife Management Area near Lake Mary. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission decided to pause the hunt in 2016 and on Wednesday voted not to hold another one until 2019 at the earliest. [LUIS SANTANA  |   Times]
  9. Flying lead: Couple, Dade City gun range battle over contamination cleanup

    Environment

    DADE CITY

    Step onto the homestead of Paul and Juanita Vasko, and the sights and sounds of rural eastern Pasco County are unmistakable: dirt road, crowing roosters, parked tractor, a fledgling blueberry patch, plenty of outdoor clutter and gun fire.

    Lots of gun fire.

    Pictured is a view of the Dade City Rod and Gun Club’s rifle and pistol range as seen from neighbors Paul and Nita Vasko’s property in Dade City, Fla., on Thursday, April 13, 2017. The Vaskos first engaged in court proceedings with the Dade City Rod and Gun Club in 2012, after they said the club removed noise-muffling carpet that reduced noise pollution on the Vaskos’ property. Since then, the two parties have litigated over a berm the Vaskos say the Rod and Gun Club built on their property.
  10. Bears on the agenda for today's Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission meeting

    Environment

    Bears are on the agenda for a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission meeting scheduled to begin 8:30 a.m. Wednesday in Tallahassee.