University of Florida


To live in harmony with the Florida environment, we need to be aware of how our lives intersect with and affect it. We offer information about the animal and plant species that live here, as well as the coasts, estuaries, forests, swamps, lakes, hammocks, and wetlands that make our state unique, so you can enjoy—and help preserve—these treasures.

To find out what Extension services are available in your area or to get personal assistance, please contact your county Extension office.

Red Tides

Nearly every summer red tides, or harmful algal blooms (HABs), appear along some of Florida’s coasts, turning the water red or brown. Red tides—which can last anywhere from a few weeks to more than year—are created when tiny plants or algae overgrow, discoloring the water and, at times, producing harmful effects or toxins. While many refer to this algae overgrowth as a red tide, researchers prefer the term harmful algal  More»

July Wildlife Happenings

From hatching alligators to baby foxes leaving their dens, July has a variety of wildlife happenings. More...  More»

Shark Attacks: Reducing the Risks

While swimming in the surf or catching some waves, you may have wondered how you would react if a shark swam by or—even worse—attacked. Although you have a greater chance of getting struck by lightning or injured in a boating accident than getting attacked by a shark, it is still important to learn about different shark attacks. Types of Unprovoked Attacks In 2014, the United States reported 52 shark attacks, which was five more than the  More»

Ticks & Disease in Florida

Ticks can be found throughout the year in Florida, but there are seasonal differences in the abundance of nymphs and adults. Ticks in either stage can transmit any diseases they carry, so quick removal of ticks and prevention of tick bites are both important. There can be an increased risk of disease from nymphs because they are often small enough to avoid being noticed. Tick Types Brown Dog Tick The brown dog tick feeds mainly on dogs and is  More»

Managing Invasives: Asian Tiger Mosquito

Learn about the Asian tiger mosquito, which has spread to all of Florida's 67 counties. More...  More»