Invasive Species

Exotic Pet Amnesty Day is this Saturday. Florida wildlife officials are touting the day as a legal alternative to release exotic pets that owners no longer want to keep.

They're beautiful - and they're deadly. And they're here. Lionfish are infesting waters around Florida, and there might be one tasty way to stem the tide of this invasive species.

Lionfish were  named for the beautiful mane of deadly stingers that surround their body. They were introduced in South Florida in the mid-1980's, and have since spread throughout the Caribbean, the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Coast to New England. They're voracious eaters, outcompeting everything in their path.

State Program Records 500th Python Kill

Aug 18, 2017

With the state trying to reduce invasive species in areas such as the Everglades, a hunter Thursday killed the 500th Burmese python in less than five months under a South Florida Water Management District program.

A Florida congressman helped catch and kill five invasive Burmese pythons during a nighttime hunt in the Everglades.

U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney joined hunters hired by the South Florida Water Management District in the wetlands Thursday night, the Naples Daily News reported.

Photo: Journal of Economic Entomology

An harmless-looking species of Asian wood-boring beetle, previously unknown in the western hemisphere, could spell disaster for the U.S. forestry industry. Researchers at the University of Florida's IFAS School of Forest Resources say the beetle, nicknamed the sweetgum inscriber for its endless appetite for the American sweetgum tree, is 100 percent lethal when exposed to otherwise healthy trees or forests, could cost the hardwood timber industry millions.

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