Water levels in the Panama Canal and deforestation in the Chagres River watershed. The migration of salmon and the health of trees and orcas in Washington State. Watching the PBS special series Age of Nature (which aired in October of 2020), we in north Florida can find stories that feel familiar. There might not be orcas in Apalachicola Bay, or salmon in the Apalachicola River, but there is an interplay between the river and bay here, and the ecosystems around them. Rivers are much more than the water that flows through them; that’s true in Florida, Washington, or Panama.
The Age of Nature is about the human relationship to nature, and fixing our past mistakes. Through a grant from PBS, we’re exploring that relationship along the Apalachicola River basin. There may not be a region in our area with a tighter human connection to nature. A crippled oyster fishery and a timber industry wrecked by Hurricane Michael have illustrated this. Restored longleaf habitat alone won’t fix these problems. But it is one important component of this watershed.
Age of Nature on WFSU | Virtual Events, Video Segments, and Radio Stories
Our Age of Nature project combined traditional television and radio stories with virtual screening/ discussion events. With our project partners, we answered the three questions at the heart of Age of Nature.
What have our past mistakes taught us about nature?
How is our understanding of nature changing the way we live?
As the challenges we face mount, where are we heading next?
Project partners on Age of Nature on WFSU included The Nature Conservancy in Florida, Apalachicola Riverkeeper, Florida Native Plant Society, UF Thompson Earth Systems Institute, and author Susan Cerulean.
Age of Nature on WFSU | Virtual Events
Watch a preview of PBS’s special series Age of Nature, and watch a discussion on the future of the Apalachicola River basin with our all star panel. We talked about restoring habitat along the Apalachicola, climate resiliency, and the closure of the Apalachicola Bay oyster fishery.
A thirty-minute virtual field trip to one of Florida’s distinctive landscapes: the Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines. Explore steephead ravines, longleaf forests, and tall river bluffs in one of North America’s top biodiversity hotspots.
Age of Nature on WFSU | Video Segments and Ecology Blog Posts
Habitat restoration in the Apalachicola Bluffs and ravines sends ripples throughout the whole river system, and preserves globally rare ecology and geology.
We look at the many plants and animals- including a few rare ones- that make the Apalachicola Bluffs and Ravines a top biodiversity hotspot.
Climate change has left a mark on the Apalachicola watershed. We look at how habitat restoration and land purchases might make the region more resilient.
Age of Nature on WFSU-FM
Years of low river flows have caused the loss of over 40% of tupelo trees in the Apalachicola floodplain, affecting the production of Tupelo honey.
Still reeling from Hurricane Michael, Calhoun County looks to boost its economy through ecotourism.
With strong storms and sea level rise threatening US 98, the Apalachee Regional Planning Council looks to reintroduce intertidal habitats, such as salt marshes and oyster reefs, to fight erosion along the road.
Struggling to recover after an oyster fishery crash in 2012, Apalachicola Bay considers closing the fishery for five years.
Age of Nature project partner Susan Cerulean discusses her new book, which weaves together a story of personal loss with her experience watching shorebird habitats in decline.
Endangered Red-Cockaded Woodpecker’s Recovery So Successful Federal Officials Are Now Considering Downlisting It
Artificial nesting boxes and reintroduction programs have increased the number of red cockaded woodpeckers, causing the US Fish and Wildlife to consider removing its endangered status.