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7 Experiences to Savor Only in the Florida Keys

Florida Keys locals and in-the-know visitors often greet the news of some particularly offbeat happening by grinning, nodding and sagely murmuring, Only in the Florida Keys. FLORIDA KEYS — Florida Keys locals and in-the-know visitors often greet the news of some particularly offbeat happening by grinning, nodding and sagely murmuring, “Only in the Keys.” The phrase…

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Texas A&M Helping Find ‘Key’ to Preserving Endangered Florida Key Deer

For the past several months, a Texas A&M University System institute has been actively involved in efforts to quash a screwworm outbreak in Florida that has jeopardized an already endangered species, said the director for the Institute of Renewable Natural Resources. “While there had been no screwworm outbreaks in the U.S. for the past 30 years,…

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National Key Deer Refuge – Population Studies Drive Management Actions

The number of Key deer deaths due to New World screwworm infestation has remained stable at 132 for more than a week; however, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) officials are remaining diligent with protection measures to save this endangered species. The screwworm outbreak has increased the normal mortality rate within the small population of…

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Key Deer Are Conservation Success Story – Still Face Threats

Key deer were almost hunted to extinction. By 1950, as few as 25-50 of the animals were left. But the creation of the National Key Deer Refuge on Big Pine Key and protection under the Endangered Species Act have led to a comeback. The most recent population study estimates the herd at 900 to 1,000. “They…

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Your Lower Florida Keys Vacation Bucket List

The Lower Florida Keys have some well-known destinations. Lying between the Middle Florida Keys and Key West, with Big Pine Key’s Key Deer and Bahia Honda State Park’s beaches as well as one of the top diving spots, Looe Key, will keep visitors busy and happy. There are also many historic locations to satisfy any…

Best stops on the Overseas Highway – Big Pine Key

Road trips don’t come more spectacular than the Overseas Highway. Sailing through tropical savanna over the Florida Straits, it links Miami on the mainland with the 180-kilometer-long Florida Keys island chain. Most visitors head straight to Key West, the southernmost city in the continental United States, but if they stopped along the way they’d find secluded…

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Big Pine Key Man Charged With Shooting and Killing Key Deer

BY KEVIN WADLOW A Big Pine Key man confessed to the Friday shooting death of an endangered Key deer, state wildlife officers report. Grant M. Wilson, 33, was arrested Saturday on a felony count of killing a protected species. Officer Jeremy Foell of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission investigated. “Mr. Wilson advised…

Key Deer Reproduction

The breeding season, or rut, takes place in the fall and early winter. Most mating occurs in October. Pregnancy is about seven months or 200 days, with most fawns born between April and June. Fawns are tiny – only 2-4 pounds at birth. Most does have only one fawn per year. The males drop their antlers…