Florida sets aside 13 areas to protect vulnerable wildlife

Florida sets aside 13 areas to protect vulnerable wildlife

More than a dozen areas across the state of Florida have been set aside to protect vulnerable wildlife during critical times such as breeding, feeding and migration, officials announced on Wednesday.

A spokesperson for the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission said a total of 13 areas were designated as the Critical Wildlife Areas for vulnerable wild species.

The decision is expected to help vulnerable wildlife like nesting birds, which are at a risk due to disturbance during hatching of eggs and increasing deaths of baby birds.

Making the announcement, the spokesperson added, "Without these safeguards, nesting birds are at risk of disturbance that result in unhatched eggs and the death of baby birds. As a direct outcome of FWC's action today, thousands more baby birds will now be able to survive and thrive on the Sunshine State's coasts."

The Critical Wildlife Area will not be permanently closed to people. The special designation just intended to protect wildlife during critical times, such as breeding and feeding.

The list of Florida's Critical Wildlife Areas includes Dot-Dash-Dit Islands in Manatee County; Roberts Bay Island in Sarasota County; Stick Marsh Rookery in Brevard County; Pine Island Sound in Lee County; the spoil island Port Orange Colony in Volusia County; and Withlacoochee State Forest Caves in Citrus County.