Creature Feature: Burmese Pythons Prowl the Everglades, and That’s Not a Good Thing

Breeding populations of Burmese pythons have been established in Everglades National Park and some other parts of Florida. Limiting the growth and spread of this ecologically disruptive, potentially dangerous invader will be a daunting task.

National Park Mystery Plant 2: There’s Good Reason They Call This Thing "the Death Apple”

This tree, which can be found growing in a few of our national parks, is one you’ll want to treat with respect. Its various parts are full of toxins that can irritate your skin, temporarily blind you, make you very sick, or even kill you.

Might The Obama Administration be More Invested in Everglades Restoration Than Its Predecessor?

Everglades National Park, Rodney Cammauf photo.
Different administrations in Washington have different sets of priorities. While the Bush administration talked about helping restore the massive Everglades ecosystem, the Obama administration is sending signals it will work harder to push the project forward.
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National Park Week: Lot's Going On Out There Across the System

While every day of the year offers opportunities to explore the National Park System and learn something about this unique collection of properties, once a year the president proclaims "National Park Week" with hopes folks will get out and enjoy the parks. This year that week starts Saturday, April 18, and runs through next Saturday, April 26.

National Parks: Valuable Assets In Efforts To Conserve Birdlife

Xantus's Murrelet, copyright Glen Tepke.
Peregrine Falcons, once teetering on extinction, are regulars at Acadia National Park. Bald Eagles, also once feared to be ready to blink out, have rebounded incredibly and are highly visible in many national parks. During a week-long canoe trip in Yellowstone National Park last fall I was blown away by the birdlife. But how is the overall "state of birds" in America these days? Unfortunately, things aren't entirely as they appear.

Creature Feature: Meet the Asian Swamp Eel, "the Animal Equivalent of the Kudzu Vine?"

The Asian swamp eel is prolific, hardy, voracious, ecologically disruptive, and on its way to becoming the scourge of the Everglades. Is it already too late to stop it?

Flamingo Lodge is No More

Hurricane damaged beyond repair in 2005, Everglades’ venerable Flamingo Lodge has finally been demolished. It remains to be seen when, if ever, a replacement structure will be built.

National Park Mystery Plant 1: Will This “Lime-Green Cancer” Derail Everglades Restoration?

This virulently invasive plant, sometimes called the “lime-green cancer” and "the most dangerous plant in Florida," already infests some areas of Everglades National Park. If not controlled soon it might wipe out decades of ecosystem restoration efforts. Do you know what this nightmare plant is?

On Interior Secretaries, National Park Stimulus Funds, And Oil Shale

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar spent roughly 30 minutes Wednesday fielding questions from reporters, but he really didn't offer much substance when it came to the national parks. Although, he did make a curious statement about the dire condition of the parks and the stimulus packages being debated by Congress.

Echoes of the Cold War in the Tropical Warmth of Everglades National Park

Former missle base in Everglades NP.
For most people, the name Everglades National Park conjures up a variety of mental images: alligators, birds and other wildlife; tropical swamps and a "River of Grass." The Everglades may not immediately bring to mind a historical site from the Cold War, but that's the latest visitor attraction at the Florida park.

Everglades Land Bill Approved, But With a Caveat

A massive real estate deal with U.S. Sugar Corporation that is envisioned as being key to protecting the Everglades and Everglades National Park has been approved, but with a caveat that allows Florida officials an escape clause.

Is Florida's Blockbuster Sugar Deal to Help the Everlgades In Danger of Collapse?

With a critical vote looming Tuesday on whether the state of Florida will move forward with its buyout of U.S. Sugar properties to benefit the Everglades and Everglades National Park, the $1.34 billion deal no longer seems like a surety.

Everglades Coaltion's Annual Meeting In Early January

The annual meeting of the Everglades Coalition, which works for the health of the ecosystem that includes Everglades National Park, is set for early next month.

From Job Creation to Everglades Czar, Green Groups Have Lengthy National Parks Wishlist

Lower Falls, Yellowstone National Park. Kurt Repanshek photo.
A coalition of nearly 30 "green groups" has a lengthy to-do list for the incoming Obama administration when it comes to the National Park System. For starters, they say, let's include the parks in the economic stimuli being proposed, expect more from National Park Service leadership, and protect the natural resources.
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Wood Stork. Photo by Sarah Zenner, NPS.With winter coming on, the wood storks will be more visible in Everglades National Park, as it's a prime wintering grounds for this big bird. But what's the deal with shuffle? Watch this video to get the answer.

National Park Quiz 26: Frightful Places and Scary Stuff

Halloween is the day after tomorrow, so let’s turn to the scarier side of national park visitation for this week’s quiz. Answers are at the end, but please don’t peek. Cheaters never prosper – unless, of course, they work on Wall Street.

Imagine the Impacts of Climate Change on the National Park System

Waterless Yosemite Fall, Kurt Repanshek photo
Imagine Yosemite National Park without Yosemite Fall. Or Glacier National Park without glaciers. Or Old Faithful becoming less faithful. Across the National Park System, the effects of climate change could be quite dramatic.
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Young Panther is Killed Crossing a Road in Everglades National Park

A car struck and killed a panther kitten Monday night in Everglades National Park. There are probably fewer than 100 panthers left in south Florida, so the death of even a single youngster is very sad.

Lost to Hurricanes, the Flamingo Lodge at Everglades National Park Will be Hard to Replace

Flamingo Lodge, the only major lodging facility in Everglades National Park, was trashed by Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma in 2005. If enough money can be found somewhere, it’ll be replaced with a lodging complex that is smaller, greener, and more hurricane-resistant.

Everglades Coalition, Foundation Offer State of Florida Suggestions for Managing Land Acquisition

In June the state of Florida announced a bold move to help the Everglades by purchasing nearly 200,000 acres north of Everglades National Park. Now the state is being offered some suggestions on how best to leverage that land acquisition for the benefit of the "River of Grass."
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Deal to Close Sugar Plant and Preserve 187,000 Acres Should Benefit Everglades National Park

In what's being called an unprecedented chapter in land conservation history, the state of Florida has agreed to buy 187,000 acres north of Everglades National Park and preserve the land to help ensure water flows into the park from Lake Okeechobee.

National Park Quiz 5: Biggest This or That

Bigger is not always better, but it certainly can be interesting. Many national parks claim bragging rights to the biggest something-or-other. Can you sort them out? Take this week's quiz and see how you measure up. Answers are at the end. No peeking.

Everglades National Park Wildfire Grows To nearly 33,000 Acres

Dry, windy conditions are feeding a wildfire that has burned nearly 33,000 acres in Everglades National Park. Officials believe the so-called "Mustang Corner" fire was human-caused.

Utah Boy Wins Top Honors in National Park Foundation's Essay Contest

A Utah boy and his family spent Earth Day at Everglades National Park thanks to his winning entry in the National Park Foundation's 2008 essay contest.

NPCA: Health of Everglades National Park Requires a Longer Bridge Along the Tamiami Trail

Once seen as an innovative project for its time, in 1929, Tamiami Trail was built along the northern edge of what was to become Everglades National Park and through Big Cypress National Preserve. It fulfilled the dream to create passage across the Everglades from Tampa to Miami. Today, many people feel much differently about the road that currently impedes the natural flow of water through the historic River of Grass.

Another Snake Story from Everglades National Park

How do you remove a python from your rig's engine block? That was the problem a visitor to Everglades National Park recently encountered. The solution is not as simple as you might think.

Climate Change and the National Parks

Climate change slowly is changing the landscape of America’s national parks. As temperatures warm and storm traits alter, ecosystem change is anticipated and expected to carry a range of impacts.
You ever wonder where place names originate? I mean, Hog Key Campsite in Everglades National Park? And University Dock in Biscayne National Park? What were they thinking?

Dying in the Parks: Park Service Concerned About Suicides

Each year nearly 100 people attempt suicide somewhere in the national park system. That's a troubling statistic for the National Park Service.

NPCA Proposes Rebuilding Guidelines for the Flamingo Area of Everglades National Park

Gentler on the landscape. That's a key factor in the National Parks Conservation Association's vision for redeveloping the Flamingo area of Everglades National Park that was devastated by hurricanes Katrina and Wilma in a one-two punch back in 2005.