Coastal Corner

MDC Conservation Focuses on Brazilian Pepper Eradication

MDC Conservation Focuses on Brazilian Pepper Eradication

By Lisa D. Mickey Conservation is always a central focus at Marine Discovery Center, and one of the ways the center helps local residents understand and get involved is through hands-on experience.​Tess Sailor-Tynes, MDC’s Conservation Science Coordinator, has been...

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MDC Summer Campers Learn From “No-Waste Lunches”

MDC Summer Campers Learn From “No-Waste Lunches”

By Lisa D. Mickey Youngsters in the Marine Discovery Center’s summer camp program spent 10 weeks exploring the coastal ecosystem, but they also took a keen interest this summer in learning how to minimize their human impact. That’s because prior to the start of camp,...

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Spanish Moss Plays Role in Natural Flora and Fauna

Spanish Moss Plays Role in Natural Flora and Fauna

By Lisa D. Mickey Think of Florida and the Southeast United States and a picture of Spanish moss draped through the boughs of stately live oak trees likely comes to mind. Hanging like hundreds of fibrous gray curtains from tree limbs, Spanish moss (Tillandsia...

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Mistletoe Myths and Kisses Abundant During Holiday Season

Mistletoe Myths and Kisses Abundant During Holiday Season

By Lisa D. MickeyIt’s common to spot mistletoe growing in the tops of trees at this time of year throughout Central Florida and the Southeast. If you spy a large green plant clump growing amid the boughs of deciduous trees (trees that lose their leaves during the...

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Brazilian Pepper: All Is Not Jolly With “Florida Holly”

Brazilian Pepper: All Is Not Jolly With “Florida Holly”

By Lisa D. MickeyDuring the holiday season here in Florida, you might be tempted to deck the halls with the beautiful red berries from a plant often called “Florida Holly” or the “Christmasberry tree.” But take heed: the plant that bears these bright red berries, the...

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Basic Tips For Better Birding

Basic Tips For Better Birding

By Lisa D. Mickey Birds have a way of sending you back to your field guide, especially when winter migrants start soaring into Florida, landing on the pond behind your house and making you wonder exactly which bird you are seeing out your back door. That has been the...

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Opinion: Make Your ‘Date With the Beach’ On July 5th

Opinion: Make Your ‘Date With the Beach’ On July 5th

By Lisa D. Mickey Independence Day is a festive time. It’s a mid-year summer month when Americans celebrate our freedom. As a child, I enjoyed 4th of July fireworks, particularly over baseball stadiums after games when the pops, fizzles and booms echoed off the...

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Soundscape Project Serves As Reminder To Listen To Nature

Soundscape Project Serves As Reminder To Listen To Nature

By Lisa D. Mickey The spring of 2020 may forever be remembered as a season of fear and change when the Corona-19 virus roared across the globe in pandemic fashion and impacted many lives along the way. Businesses and schools closed their doors around the world, which...

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Bird Rookery Islands Cleaned and Ready For Nesting Season

Bird Rookery Islands Cleaned and Ready For Nesting Season

By Lisa D. Mickey Just as it’s an annual rite of spring for the wading birds to begin displaying their breeding plumage on the rookery islands here in New Smyrna Beach, another annual occurrence is a task designed to benefit these amazing creatures. That task has...

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Gopher Tortoise Halts MDC Construction, Prompts Relocation

Gopher Tortoise Halts MDC Construction, Prompts Relocation

by Lisa D. Mickey The Marine Discovery Center got a little surprise from a burrowing reptile after it had started construction this spring. Executive director Chad Truxall was walking the center’s campus in early April and noticed a hole in the base of what will be...

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Bird Rookery Islands Receive An Assist From MDC Staff

Bird Rookery Islands Receive An Assist From MDC Staff

By Lisa D. Mickey MDC Staffers Charity, Wendy, Lois, and Lisa help clean the rookery island in February I reached above my head through the mangrove trees for the lifeless brown pelican hanging in the limbs of the bird rookery island. The beautiful bird was still soft...

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Sea Turtles Abundant During 2017 Nesting Season

Sea Turtles Abundant During 2017 Nesting Season

By Lisa D. Mickey Turtle-tracking volunteers and Canaveral National Seashore staff were busy during the 2017 nesting season with record-setting numbers of turtles finding the beaches of Volusia County. Volusia County’s beaches experienced its second-highest nesting...

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Save Your Applause For The Scientists

Save Your Applause For The Scientists

By Lisa D. Mickey I admit it. I’m as guilty as anyone else when it comes to admiring top sports teams and appreciating the skills of world-ranked athletes. I love seeing them work together as a team to win championships or close games. And I enjoy watching...

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When MDC Naturalists Offer Helping Hands To Lagoon Species

When MDC Naturalists Offer Helping Hands To Lagoon Species

by Lisa D. Mickey As naturalists at the Marine Discovery Center, it’s common to encounter wildlife on our eco-tours. Guests love it and we do, too! But sometimes we encounter wildlife in need during our tours as we paddle in kayaks or cruise past mangrove trees on the...

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NSB High School Excavation Materials Become New Reefs

NSB High School Excavation Materials Become New Reefs

by Lisa D. Mickey When the Marine Discovery Center cleared the site previously occupied by New Smyrna Beach High School in the summer of 2014, a unique kind of “harvest” took place as the five-acre salt marsh was restored. All of the concrete and structural debris...

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Osprey Nesting Platform At MDC

Osprey Nesting Platform At MDC

osprey nesting platform by Lisa D. Mickey Tom Draus and Susan Fetter experienced the usual dilemma of students enrolled in Florida Master Naturalist Program (FMNP) classes: What would be their required project? Both were enrolled in the FMNP Coastal Naturalist class...

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Our Mission:

"To protect and restore Florida's coastal and Indian River Lagoon ecosystems
through education, research and community stewardship."