Deltona, FL - Saturday, April 10, is officially Gopher Tortoise Day, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). Since the gopher tortoise lives in every Florida county, FWC suggests making your yard tortoise friendly and taking part in their new recognition program.
The purpose of the Gopher Tortoise Friendly Yard Recognition Program is to recognize and encourage landowners to enhance habitat quality and take steps to protect gopher tortoises and their burrows. Keeping the burrows and tortoises safe benefits more than 350 other species that use the burrows for shelter, foraging, and nesting habitat.
You can learn more about the creatures locally on Saturday, April 10, by taking part in a gopher tortoise trek and hike at the Lyonia Environmental Center, 2150 Eustace Ave., Deltona. You'll learn about the important role these long-lived reptiles play in the scrub ecosystem, how you can help them, and how the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission tracks them. After the classroom presentation, participants can join staff on a guided hike through Lyonia Preserve.
There is a limit of eight participants for this program. Registration is required; call 386-789-7207, ext. #21028. Walk-ins will not be permitted.