Manatee Captures

A few weeks ago I accompanied the wildlife society student chapter at UF, to Crystal River. There we assisted several agencies with the catch and release of manatees for research purposes.

The manatee captures stared off by an educational meeting reviewing the habitats and the importance of maintaining these habitats for manatee populations.

Next we boated out to a cove where we swung a large net into the water. One end was connected to shore while the other was attached to a boat. The boat would make a semicircle with the shore around some manatees.

The crew on land would then pull the 1000 pound animals onto shore. This was no small feat; especially since in the first cast we caught 3 manatees. Two of which were a cow calf pair. We would then maneuver the manatees on to stretcher and relocated them to the other side of the cove were we would perform “work-ups”.

This consisted of weighing, measuring length and girth, flippers, oxygen and CO2 levels. Taking blood work and biopsies samples for genetic research. All of these things and more were performed on each animal.

We would then release them back into the water and catch some more. This was an exhilarating experience that I would definitely volunteer for again.

Author: Ashley Summers Tyer

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Hunting

 

I hunt no more to kill animals than I garden to kill cabbages.

V. Giest

 

 

Majority of people are non-hunters, hunters and anti-hunters actually make up the minority see below:

 

 

My permit to hunt on my own land is an ANNUAL association fee of $ 120.00. This money goes directly back into the land to improve habitat for all species including non-game species.  Hunting costs money this money helps conservation and the economy: hunting gear, fishing, fishing gear, guns, outfits, gas, food, beer, dog collars, vet bills, ammo, Wal-Mart during hunting season. Hunting helps out the economy is such a tremendous way.

read becompto90 blog “DU and Conservation Efforts”  for more info.

 

Many people, especially in central and south FL hunt hogs. Hogs are invasive species; thus hunters are actually decreasing the invasive species epidemic throughout the US.

 

Letting deer populations rise above carrying capacity by restricting hunting or killing off the wolves, actually prevents regeneration in forests. The resulting implications are astronomical. Deer and other herbivores need to be kept in check by hunters in order to maintain a healthy ecosystem.

 

There is a term called a harvestable surplus. These numbers are actually calculated by paid wildlife biologists. These numbers represents the number of individuals in a population, given survivor rates and other factors, that will die regardless of who or what killed them. These numbers determine rules, regulations, bag limits, seasons, size, gender and more. There is an actual science behind the idea hunting. People that are against it should look into the facts before taking a side.

 

 

If hunting were stopped there could be unseen implications. know implications are laid out in the following slide:

People that use the argument that hunting is dangerous, once again have failed to do their research.

 

 

If the minority had their way, they would actually be contributing to the recession, over surplus of deer; resulting in a homogeneous environment lack biodiversity and species richness.

 

all sides are credited to  a wildlife professor at the University of FL. Dr. Bill Giuliano, undergraduate program coordinator.

 

Author: Ashley Summers Tyer

 

 

 

Thank God for Evolution!

A case for the creator!

I was brought up on the belief that evolution was a thought created by the devil. My parents are traditional Southern Baptists in the strongest sense of the word; as am I. So what do I believe you ask? Well, since I have based my entire college education on significant scientific facts, and biology is the foundation for my major, not AG ED, I DO believe in evolution.

The facts that surround the ‘THEORY’ of evolution are as numerous as they are indisputable.  Emphasis was placed on the word theory to point out the fact that gravity is also a theory. Hum how can this be when know gravity exists right?

Wrong, the theory of gravity proposes this force exists. When a theory is tested enough, the scientific community considers it a law. It is then generally accepted. Evolution is generally accepted by all those except the religious types that have not educated themselves on the processes surrounding it’s etiology.

It is a fact that the theory of evolution is MORE proven, and has MORE supportive information than the theory of GRAVITY!!!

Why is this? Countless people spent portions of their lives researching, trying to DISPROVE evolution. In return they solidified and reinforced the facts behind evolution.  There are endless studies, observations, and research that support evolution.

The only thing that the religious people can dispute evolution with is that God created the world in seven days; and that the world is only a few thousand years old. (Yes some theologian calculated the exact age of earth by interpreting the bible.)

WELL HELLO, how do you know what GODS time is?

Charles Darwin was ridiculed for his radical ideas, so was Galileo Galilei! The church is not always right. People make mistakes. Interpretations of the bible can be disputed and translated wrong. I for one, do not know Hebrew, thus I can not read the bible it is true form.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charles Darwin was a brilliant man who spent many years observing nature and her entities. He formulated hypothesis and collected samples from around the world to support it.

1)      The strong survive. Suppose you have two deer; one deer has a genetic defect that hinders its ability produce long strides, while the other deer is the epitome of health. If a predator comes along, say its general gun season, which deer is going to be able to out run the dogs and get away? The healthy one who does not have leg problems. Thus this individual will reproduce, it will pass on its ‘good genes’ to its offspring. The genetic defect will be slowly weeded out of the gene pool.

Take some time to study genetics you would be astonished!

This is Evolution NOT blasphemy

 

 

2)      If you have ever taken a wildlife class than you would have learned about carrying capacity K. It is the maximum number of individuals that can survive in a given areas based on its resources.  Hence, there is a max number of individuals that can survive. That sounds a whole lot like this…”as more individuals are produced than can possibly survive, there must be a struggle for existence.” – C. Darwin

3)      Adaptations. Coping with changes and evolving new skills, characteristics, defenses, beak uses, and tolerances. While on the Galapagos Islands Darwin witnesses the different adaptations of bird beaks relative to their functions

Plants are living proof for evolution. They can multiply and combine genomes at an exponential rate; hybridize and create new species.  They are constantly evolving mechanisms to outcompete or to kill or ward off intruders. They develop tolerances or lack of. We can witness evolution first had by studying tree evolution and genetics.

Evolution’s ideas and beliefs become much more in-depth than what I can fit into a blog. If you’re interested then read Darwin’s book.

For the religious people out there…

I was taught that there are somethings in this world that we will not understand. Only the father can enlighten us when we return to him. One example is that “God is three in one”. God is all three but Jesus is God’s son and God is not Jesus nor the holy spirit.  So why can’t evolution and the concept of God’s time, be one of those things, that while on earth, we will never fully understand?

When I am embraced by the sun or I spend hours alone in the wilderness, I have a sense of awe; thus my major is Natural Resource Conservation. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the almighty GOD is responsible for this world. I also believe he created evolution. He is the driving force, he propelled the dust particles, and he created life, setting all things into existence.

The theory of Evolution cannot explain the very beginning of time just proposals.

Subsequently, I believe, since we can never imagine how God’s time works,  that God set this world into motion. He commanded light, formed the seas, and out of the sea he created life. He created animals and lastly man was formed.

This also sounds a lot like the evolutionary history of our world. I propose that God’s time could have been moving over millions of our years, days to him.

 

 

Old Baptists Saying

Man: “God, how long is a million years to you?”

God: “A minute”

Man: “God, how much is a million dollars to you?”

God: “A penny”

Man: “God can I have a penny?”

God: “In a minute!”

 

This is my main point. I strongly believe in God, I am not raining on any ones parade. I support many religions, since I feel that we are all worshiping the same God but by different means and different names (for the most part). I believe in God AND evolution! I believe in a case for the creator.

 

Author: Ashley Tyer

Managing Your Online Presence

Dear eager to please and desperate to fit in,

I know it is tough for you; I have been there myself. I went through the middle school ambiguities and the high school drama. I made friends and enemies and had to deal with bullies. I wanted to be popular and cool; just like you.

Diary of a Whippy Kid is an excellent example of how always trying to fit in can backfire; sometimes just being yourself is the key.

Beware of what you post on the internet. As a college student looking for potential employment, I have to be concessions of the things I post or say. Although, I might find something innocent and fun, an employer could be astonished. This could result in my unemployment.

There are a few things you can ask yourself before posting information on the web:

  1.  Who will see this?

In other-wards is it marked private or can any old creep look at pictures of me in a swimsuit.

2. Would I show this to my mother/ pastor/ grandmother?

Yes it must pass all three.

3. Is this illegal?

Underage drinking, drug use, confessing that you were drinking and driving on a friend’s post, etc.

Not a good site to like

4. Swearing?

This is inappropriate no matter who sees it. I feel that people who cuss do not have a broad enough vocabulary to think of a better word.

5. Are you cyber bulling?

The famous phrase, “do unto others”. This makes you look negative and insecure; just don’t do it.

6. Why I am I posting this picture, comment, or video?

This is the most important question to ask yourself, WHY? Is it for attention? Are you trying to be cool? If you post a hot enough picture will that guy at school be looking on your profile? This goes back to fitting in. do you want to post a picture of you drinking at a party, so people will think you’re bad.

The next time you consider posting something that might be inappropriate please review the latter questions and think hard about the repercussions.

I was looking for steps for a line dance on You Tube. I type in “country girl shake it line dance” I was shocked with the results. Instead of dance moves I saw videos of so called country girls shaking it. The worst part was that the majority of the country girls that were shaking were too young to have anything to shake. I saw numerous videos of 12-14 year old girls shaking there booties on the internet. I scrolled down to view the comments; I was sickened: “You can shake it for me any time,” “love to take you to the bar,” “I’ll make you shake.”

Definitely don’t look up “drunk chicks line dances”

More than anything I wanted to call those girls’ parents. I wanted to tell those girls that EVERYONE can see that video; sex offenders, their grandparents, principals, and teachers. I lost respect for those girls, and I don’t even know them.

If I saw my child like that on the internet, they would be booted back to the Stone Age. No TV, No cell phone, and NO internet. EVER again!

Having an online presence can be beneficial if it’s managed properly. Being responsible, educated, and polite, should continue on to online life. Social networking can be utilized for job opportunities and great connections. Conversely, it can also be used for kidnapping, sexual assault, bulling, and much more. Being aware of your surroundings and not talking to strangers is more relevant than ever.

Although you may be young, you are smart. You are the future of the online world. What you post will not disappear because you delete it; it will remain long after. So plan ahead, be resourceful. Don’t abuse the internet; yet, don’t neglect its power.

Author:  Ashley S Tyer

How Trees Allocate Their Resources

 

Most people know that tress and plants perform photosynthesis. This is the process of taking carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere, water, and solar energy; then converting them to glucose (aka photosynthates).

 

These photosynthates are used in a specific manner that best suits the tree.

 

When one thinks of a really big old tree they might think of how tall it is or how wide it is. In actuality, height and girth are relatively low priorities for a tree.

 

Allocation of photosynthates:

1) Maintaining Respiration

2) Production of Leaves & Fine Root Hairs

3) Flower & Seed Production

4) Primary Growth

5) Adding Girth & Resistances

 

 

 

1)       Maintaining respiration is a trees number one priority.

Thus a tree will use up most of its daily photosynthates on breathing. Trees are made up of living cells: sapwood, leaves, and roots; and nonliving tissues: heartwood and bark.

2)       Production of leaves and fine root hairs would be the second thing a tree would use its photosynthates on. Leaves are the ones performing photosynthesis, thus producing photosynthates which the tree uses to grow.

New fine roots are also important because they bring in water and nutrients.

 

3)       The next allocation of photosynthates would be to flower and seed production. Reproducing is the life long goal of all living things. Thus, after necessities are out of the way, the tree can now plan for the future.

4)       The tree will now allocate its photosynthates to primary growth. Primary growth is terminal and lateral branching. This can only happen after a tree has ensured its survival. It will now compete from space above and below ground.

 

5)       If there are any photosynthates left over the tree will use them to add girth and defense mechanisms to aid in survival. Although society believes that girth is the most important characteristic for a tree (economically) it is actually the tree’s lowest priority for the allocation of photosynthates.

 

When trees grow there are many factors that are taken into consideration: light temperature, oxygen, precipitation, amount of nutrients, disturbance and so forth.

Examples:

Photosynthesis is dependent on temperature. Ideal temperature ranges are between 45 ° F and 65 °F.

Many trees have tolerances. For instance pine species are shade intolerant, and thus must grow tall and fast win the race for the sun.  Many oak species can survive in the understory because they are shade tolerant.

Trees grow up and out. For instant if you hammer a nail in a tree at 4 ft and the tree grows 3 ft a year. In 5 years where will that nail be?  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Would the nail be at 19 ft ?

3 ft/yr x 5 yrs + the 4 original ft.

No! The nail would still be at 4 ft since the tree grows from the terminal bud up. Although, your nail might get covered up by added girth.

 

 

Ultimately trees allocate there resources in accordance to what they need, unfortunately, that’s not always what people want from their landscapes.

 

 

Author: Ashley Tyer

 

 

“Although I’ve had many… Gods knows I’ll have more…”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Funny Things My Daughter Does

Last Tuesday my mother and step father took my sister to Texas Cattle Company for her free birthday steak, my daughter attended as well. My daughter’s name is Laurel-Mae Tyer. She is three years old, head strong, outspoken, and down right to the point.

Mom: Debbie

Step dad: Ken

Sister: Jessica

Daughter: Laurel-Mae

Laurel-Mae & Mommy

The evening all started when my mother picked Laurel-mae up from day care. Laurel-Mae had a craft in one hand and demanded that my mother fill up a Styrofoam cup with water before they left. As they walked out the door my mother went to hold her hand to go into the parking lot, she announced and pulled away… “Nooo grandma my hands are full”. Ohhh anything to get out of holding a grown-ups hand.

Later on they arrived at Texas Cattle Company, the server brought out 3 salads.  Laurel-mae said very loudly, “where is my salad?” Jessica and my mother had to share their salads with her on her bread plate.  It was a house salad and I am surprised she liked it.  

After salads it took a long time for the meal to arrive.  The server came to fill the drinks and as he walked away she very loudly asked him “where is my macamoni and cheese?”  He said,” I am working on it”.  Everyone chuckled.

 

 

After dinner the server put all of the leftovers in individual boxes; she wailed when he took her plate.   Then when he gave it back to her in a box he said, “here you go sweetheart”.  No one thought anything of it; Laurel-mae however, scrunched up her face and said, “he called me sweetheart”.   Everyone roared it was too funny.

 
Later the server was talking back and forth with Ken and Jessica.
His last statement was “we killed all the cows”.  Laurel-mae yells out, “You Killed All the Cows?”

They decided it was time to go; but they sure did have fun.

Kids really do say the darndest things! Do you have any stories of your own?

 

Author: Ashley Tyer

“Although I’ve heard many… Gods knows I’ll hear more…”

Worst lie you ever told

The worst lie I ever told was a pretty bad one, but don’t judge me too harshly I was only five.

This lie sticks out the most in my mind because I almost hurt someone who cared about me, also because my parents LOVE to tell EVERYONE this story over and over.

It was midway through my kindergarten year at Skies Elementary; I was participating in free time. Here we had different stations that kids could go to and play until the bell would ring. This was a time to laugh, hang out and socialize with friends.

 

The kids in my class were talking about the movie Forest Gump that they saw at home. They were quoting lines and talking about the plot of the movie. “Life is like a box of chocolate”and so forth. That night I went home and I started talking about the movie telling my parents what it was about and quoting lines in the movie. Needless to say my parents flipped out, “where did you hear those things”? So I told them that I watched the movie in class with my teacher Mrs. Clanton. I have no recollection of why I answered the way I did, it just came out. Who really knows how the mind of a five year old works anyways? I guess I thought my parents would hear my response and move on. Since I hadn’t watched the movie and I was not old enough to understand, I did not realize the situation I was presenting.

 

My parents called the principle at once, urging that disciplinary measures be taken. My parents told the principle that the movie was inappropriate for children and it had no place in the learning environment at any age. Of course the principle agreed. A conference was held between my parents, the principle, the teacher, and myself. After much debate and arguing, although I was oblivious to what was going on; the truth finally prevailed. I told them that several kids in the class had been discussing it, I heard them, and then repeated the conversations at home. Due to my age, recklessness, and my inattention, I almost cost my teacher her job.

 

 I was in middle school before I finally watched the movie. I was really excited and felt like I was doing something wrong. After the film ended I was flabbergasted, the movie was not explicit or bad. I thought I was being a rebel and watching it behind my parents back. When I told them I had watched the movie they didn’t seem to care at all. I was dumbfounded. That’s when they explained to me that I was just too young to watch the film at five years old. It was violent, used profanity, and would raise to many questions in the mind of a five year old. I completely agree with them since I now have children of my own.

Forest Gump is rated PG-13 for sex sense, drugs, alcohol, violence, and some profanity. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0109830/parentalguide

 

 

Your Turn! Tell others about the worst lie you ever told. Who did it affect? What was the end result?

Author: Ashley Tyer

 

 

“Although I’ve told many… Gods knows I’ll tell more…”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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