Share the Shore

Rookery Bay Research Reserve, in partnership with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and Audubon Florida, has closed the emergent sandbar located one mile southeast of Cape Romano, known as “Second Chance.”

The sandbar, which is closed to public access annually from March 1 – Aug. 31, was designated as a Critical Wildlife Area (CWA) by the FWC in the fall of 2015.

The area has been closed annually since 2001 to protect nesting habitat for least terns, black skimmers and Wilson’s plover. This is the third year that the CWA rules are in place prohibiting vessels, in addition to people and dogs, from visiting the sandbar during summer nesting season.

When visiting any beach with nesting activity, visitors should consider the following guidelines to share the shore with wildlife:

  • Watch where you walk – be careful not to step on eggs or chicks.
  • Respect posted areas and keep your distance from resting or nesting birds.
  • Observe regulations pertaining to dogs – they’re prohibited from visiting city beaches, and leash laws apply elsewhere including in the Reserve.
  • Be sure to dispose of your trash properly. Place it in trash cans or take it home with you if none are available.
  • If birds appear agitated, take flight, or swoop at you, they may be trying to tell you you’re too close to their nest, so alter turn around or alter your route to avoid nesting areas.
0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.