University of Florida


To live in harmony with the Florida environment, we need to be aware of how our lives intersect with and affect it. We offer information about the animal and plant species that live here, as well as the coasts, estuaries, forests, swamps, lakes, hammocks, and wetlands that make our state unique, so you can enjoy—and help preserve—these treasures.

To find out what Extension services are available in your area or to get personal assistance, please contact your county Extension office.

Videos: Mosquito control in home landscapes

Want to know more about how you can control mosquitoes in your own back yard? Check out these recordings of a recent educational program, "Mosquitos and Zika Virus Class for Gardeners and Private Residences." This event was a collaboration of  UF/IFAS Extension St. Johns County, UF/IFAS Florida Medical Entomology Lab, the Florida Department of Health and the Anastasia Mosquito Control District. The presentations took place in St. Johns  More»

Five tips for keeping your beach clean this summer

Maia McGuire was leading middle-schoolers on a local beach clean-up when she noticed a cluster of deflated balloons on the sand. It’s not unusual to find balloons on the beach, McGuire said, but these were different: Each balloon was printed with the name of a nursing home in Texas. “Those balloons were probably the weirdest thing I’ve found on one of our beaches,” McGuire said. However, this discovery made it clear that, while beach  More»

Zika Challenge

Jim Davis is studying hard for his public health pest control license exam. In the past, getting this license wouldn’t be a usual part of his job. But with the recent public concern about the mosquito-borne Zika virus, expertise in mosquito control could soon be the norm for many University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension faculty like Davis. Davis and several others have already signed up for the UF/IFAS  More»

Science teachers learn to spread the word about invasive plants

When Kenny Coogan, a seventh-grade science teacher at Orange Grove Middle Magnet School, took an airboat ride on Lake Tohopekaliga and saw the devastation caused by invasive plants, he knew he had to bring this information back to his classroom. “After seeing the negative effects of the plants first-hand, I knew I needed to share this experience and ways to mitigate the invasive species with my students,” Coogan said. Local middle and  More»

Youth take the plunge into environmental stewardship

Can you tell me how old a fish is just by looking at a slice of bone? That’s one question youth will learn how to answer in the Manatee Marine Explorers Day Camp created by two University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension agents. “There is so much more to the ocean than what you can see on the surface,” says Angela Collins, UF/IFAS Extension Sea Grant agent in Manatee County and co-organizer of the  More»

Florida’s Mangrove Forests

Mangroves are a kind of tree or shrub that typically grow on or near shorelines in tropical and subtropical climates such as Florida’s Gulf Coast. These plants are specially adapted to the wet, salty conditions where they grow.1 Mangrove forests play an important role in coastal ecosystems and also protect coastlines from erosion.1,2 Three species of mangroves are found in Florida:  More»