Sunday, December 27, 2015

Send me your python experiences - I am looking to uncover the extent of the population - and REPORT any sightings

This is in follow up to my Saturday, December 26, 2015. post - No denying it - there is a problem in Palmetto Bay. An 8 - 10 foot Python in Palmetto Bay struck on Old Cutler Road led to the following photo being sent to me:

J. May of Paradise Point provided me with the photo posted above, taken 11/22/15: a Boa seen slithering in a tree near a third floor bedroom window.


The full photo (posted left) of the tree-dwelling snake demonstrates how well these non-native snakes can camouflage themselves in our native flora. 

This was not the first recorded incident.  October 9 - 2015 - local residents were warned of another non-native snake being seen.  The following was circulated the following day:
(referring to October 9) Last night, one of your neighbors found a snake in the middle of the street in the community.  The snake is 5 - 6 feet in length and is either a Boa Constrictor or a Reticulated Python.  Regardless, the snake has the potential to hurt small dogs and cats.  PLEASE keep your pets on a leash at ALL TIMES and keep your cats indoors, if at all possible.

If anyone sees the snake again, I have been advised by FWC to call the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Venom Unit immediately, who is supposed to be able to assist us with getting rid of it.  The telephone # I was given is 786-331-4443.

The telephone # for the FWC Regional Office is 561-625-5122.  For more information, visit: http://myfwc.com/contact/nuisance-wildlife/
Here is the photo of that snake:
Please bring any further sightings to the attention of myself as well as proper authorities that I have listed on this blog.

Thank you,

Eugene Flinn, Mayor
 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

No denying it - there is a problem in Palmetto Bay. An 8 - 10 foot Python in Palmetto Bay struck on Old Cutler Road

Another Christmas python.  This photo was taken at approximately 4 AM on Christmas (2015) morning.  The snake was DOA by the time the policing unit arrived on scene.  This is my 22nd posting involving the Invasive Species label.
Photo taken approx 4 AM, Dec 25, 2015, Old Cutler Road


We cannot ignore the fact that we have our shares of Python captures in Palmetto Bay.  A prior post from three years earlier (Dec 12, 2012), noted that two large pythons had been removed from Palmetto Bay in 2012.  CBS 4 reported on November 26, 2012, that a “very large” python who made its home on a Palmetto Bay lawn was removed by the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Venom Unit near 180 Street and SW 77 avenue.  CLICK HERE to review the online story, Pesky Python Removed From Lawn Of Palmetto Bay Home.

Then there was the Christmas Day (2012) removal of a 13 foot Burmese python occurred from a Palmetto Bay pool.  Long time readers of South Dade Updates may recall the posting of the NBC6 report on 12/26/2012: (CLICK HERE) to view: NBC 6 reports: A 13-foot Burmese python was captured in the swimming pool of a Palmetto Bay home.  The Miami Herald reported that this snake was located and captured at a Palmetto Bay home located off 97th Avenue and SW 183 Street on Christmas Day (the link to the Miami Herald story has expired).

Another famous capture was on October 12, 2005, by one of Palmetto Bay's original policing unit officers, Ofc Randy DiStefano, joined the capture of a non-native python.  This capture is took place on the grounds of the current Palmetto Bay Village Hall. 


These invasive pythons will have an impact on our local native animals and even our domestic pets, dogs and cats.  Please report any sightings of non-native species.   

What can you do?  Are you interested in assisting the FWC in locating these pests?  No one is suggesting that you should go out on a hunt, but here is how you can pass on what you observe if you happen to run into any (information taken from the official FWC web site).

Reporting by phone : You can call the FWC’s Exotic Species Hotline at 888-IVE-GOT1 (888- 483-4681). The hotline is answered part-time by a live operator and has a voicemail system that will prompt you for information about your sighting and your contact information if the operator is unable to answer the call. 

Reporting online : You can use the web form at IveGot1.org External Website to report. The form will prompt you for the information and has a map where you can select the location if you do not have the GPS coordinates.  You will need to create a free account the first time you report a sighting online.  

Sending photographs : If you have trouble attaching photos to the IveGot1 online form or smart phone apps, you can send them to ExoticReports@myfwc.com.  

CLICK HERE to view the complete information regarding downloading the app or how to otherwise assist in the effort posted on the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) website.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

MERRY CHRISTMAS - 2015

From our entire family, Meredith, Katherine, Alexandra and myself, to you and your family: Merry Christmas.  

2015 has been a very productive year.  It is our wish that everyone is enjoying this holiday season. Families celebrate the holidays in many different ways, but one of the great things that we all have in common in our area is the overwhelming sense of community and responsibility to family that we share.

Chanukah and Christmas were far apart this year, extending this season.  I again had the pleasure of participating with friends at the Chabad Jewish Center Menorah Lighting held in Coral Reef Park.  We will be attending Christmas Eve services tonight.  We are all anxiously waiting for my brother’s return home form his latest deployment overseas in Afghanistan. His wife and kids have obviously missed him terribly and look forward to what should be a late Christmas Eve return. 

I am reminded, especially during the holidays, of the importance of family and the importance of maintaining our sense of civic spirit.

I hope during this holiday season as we celebrate and enjoy our families that each and every one of us takes a few minutes to think about those families who cannot be together – for the soldiers who defend our country, for the loved ones who must share in their sacrifice, and for those who are no longer with us, although we hold their memory dear.

We all need to continue to strive to achieve the holiday ideal of “Peace on Earth.” Everyone can do their part to help create a better world simply by treating each other with understanding, kindness and respect. Each time you help another person, we all take another step closer toward true peace on earth.

So once again, we wish each and every one of you, a happy, healthy, and safe holiday season and a joyous and prosperous New Year. You all have earned it. Thank you all, again, for the kindness you show others, not just during the holidays, but all year long.

We look forward to new challenges and successes for 2016 as we close out our current year.

Eugene Flinn, Mayor

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Get Fit - And the winner, for 2016 is .......

Residents Decide on Logo that Best Fits Program

The Village of Palmetto Bay is now launching its “Get Fit Palmetto Bay” program, a year-long series of events and programs promoting wellness, nutrition, and fitness for residents, employees, and businesses in the Village. We appreciate your input on helping us jump-start the program by voting for your favorite "Get Fit Palmetto Bay" logo. Online voting ended Dec. 14 -- and the winner is LOGO 2:
Thank you for the interest in the logo selection.  I look forward to a fun year in our Palmetto Bay Parks "getting fit" with the community

Eugene Flinn, Mayor

Monday, December 14, 2015

Presentation by the Miami Pine Rocklands Coalition - -- Who they are. How you can join.

Thank you.

Thank you Al Sunshine and the entire Miami Pine Rocklands Coalition for the work you do - fighting to protect and preserve our sensitive Pine Rocklands.  The photo was taken on Saturday, December 12, 2015, during a Livable Cutler session.
I am honored to receive a Miami Pine Rocklands Limited Edition print as a "Miami Tiger Beetle" Member.  I accept this on behalf of all members of my family who have been so supportive of the effort "Save it, Don't Pave It."

CLICK HERE to view the Facebook page for Miami Pine Rocklands Coalition. Follow this link to the website for the Miami Pine Rocklands Coalition

This website also takes you to a page where you can learn of all the critters that inhabit these imperiled Pine Rocklands, including access to the downloadable / printable Coloring Books of the Pine Rockland critters.  (You may access, print and please distribute to friends, family, groups that may have an interest, teachers, etc. simply by 'rightclicking' to save it to your computer for printing.

This photoprint to the right says it all, beautifully capturing our native Pinelands.   

Thank you,

Eugene Flinn

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Welcome aboard Major - and thank you for the strong stand in addressing Palmetto Bay's Traffic woes.

I am so pleased with our new Village Police Commander, Gadyaces Serralta.  There is a must read article published online - Miami Herald, as well as in the Sunday, December 13, 2015, Neighbors section, page 4SE.

Read the Miami Herald article (while it remains available online), December 11, 2015, New police commander settled in, battles roaring traffic, by Monique O. Madan.

He has been hard at work with our Village Policing Unit tackling more than just a perp or two, he is fully onboard with one of my biggest missions – or as Major Serralta is quoted: “Our traffic enforcement initiative, where we target areas in Palmetto Bay that have a high rate of complaints — places with countless traffic violations,” said. “It’s been really busy.”

Busy is what we need to put a dent in this situation.  We can praise or grouse monthly on the crime stats each month, but traffic affects us all whenever schools are in session. 

This is a multidisciplinary approach, including public works which is hard at work in-house as well as collaboratively with Miami-Dade County on projects such as signage as well as permanent and temporary traffic calming devices.

The article goes on to reveal that; During his off time, the police commander enjoys doing charity work. Recently he participated and volunteered at a few 5K walk-a-thons and a massive fundraiser that goes toward feeding Miami’s hungry children. 

“I encourage officers to give up their time as well; we are public servants,” he said.


Recent 5Ks included the Reason to Run 5K, held in Palmetto Bay, that he and his unit volunteered to assist. He also assisted the Village council in the Veterans Day event held at post #133 in Palmetto Bay (pictured above left).

Serralta also enjoys hiking. His favorite is the Appalachian Trail – Personally, I would enjoy getting our new Major out on a bicycle.

Thank you Village Police Commander Serralta.  Welcome aboard.  Thank you for addressing what is presently our #1 concern – traffic.   

Eugene Flinn

Saturday, December 5, 2015

HAPPY CHANUKAH - 2015

Alexandra, Katherine, and Meredith join with me in wishing everyone a very Happy Chanukah.

Chanukah and Christmas are far apart this year, extending this season. I look forward to participating with Rabbi Gansburg and the Chabad of Palmetto Bay at the Chabad Jewish Center Menorah Lighting set for Saturday Dec 12 at Coral Reef Park. 

I am reminded, especially during the holidays, of the importance of family and the importance of maintaining our sense of civic spirit.

I hope during this holiday season as we celebrate and enjoy our families that each and every one of us takes a few minutes to think about those families who cannot be together – for the soldiers who defend our country, for the loved ones who must share in their sacrifice, and for those who are no longer with us, although we hold their memory dear.

We all need to continue to strive to achieve the holiday ideal of “Peace on Earth.” Everyone can do their part to help create a better world simply by treating each other with understanding, kindness and respect. Each time you help another person, we all take another step closer toward true peace on earth.

So once again, we wish each and every one of you, a happy, healthy, and safe Chanukah.

Holiday Season in the Village of Parks off and running (Weather permitting)

There are some great events are happening in the Village.  These events include those sponsored by our local schools and churches as well as Miami-Dade County and Village of Palmetto Bay official events.  The unusually rainy December is impacting some of these events such as requiring the rescheduling of the Palmetto Bay Downtown Holiday Event - originally scheduled for Saturday, 12/5.  It will now be held on Tuesday from 4 to 8 PM. 

Tuesday evening kicked off with the Palmetto Bay Business Association Social.
The Deering Estate held its Tree lighting Ceremony Friday, December 4, there was fun for all ages.  Note that the holiday season lasts throughout the month.  Check out the Deering Estate.
Alexandra and I then moved on to the family dinner dance at Christ the King Lutheran Church.
Pictured with Sister-in-Law Jennifer and Niece Joanne.  Brother Lt. Col Walter Flinn remains deployed overseas and we are looking forward to his return before the end of this year.. 
UM Board of Trustees Member Ed Williamson led us in 'throwing up the "U"'. We are excited about the hiring of Mark Richt as the new UM Head Coach.  Ed promised us that UM got itself 'a Cadillac' of coaches in Richt.  Ed Williamson is unquestionably qualified to render such an opinion.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

2016 Python Challenge

2016 Python Challenge
(CLICK the link above to view the official web page)


2016 Python ChallengeTM
.This coming year, with the help of our partners, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida are hosting the 2016 Python Challenge™. This month-long invasive species awareness campaign will again include a public competition to remove nonnative Burmese pythons from public lands in Florida. With expanded participating areas, the lands where participants can search for and remove pythons have more than doubled.

Are you up for the Challenge? Register for the Python Removal Competition and compete to see if you can harvest the longest or the most Burmese pythons and win grand prizes of $5,000 in the team category and $3,500 in the individual category.

We are providing frequent hands-on training for people who want to learn more about how
to capture pythons, both before and during the event. The 2016 Python Challenge™ will kick off at the Invasive Species Awareness Festival on Jan. 16, 2016 from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m


Details about trainings, competition rules and registration, prizes and events are posted at PythonChallenge.org.
Captured in Palmetto Bay, October 12, 2005

ONCE AGAIN: The bigger question is will Palmetto Bay be included in the hunt zone? 
Of course not, but we should talk about the fact that we have our shares of Python captures in Palmetto Bay.  A prior post from three years early, Dec 12, 2012), noting that two large pythons have been removed from Palmetto Bay in 2012.  CBS 4 reported on November 26, 2012, that a “very large” python who made its home on a Palmetto Bay lawn was removed by the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Venom Unit near 180 Street and SW 77 avenue.  CLICK HERE to review the online story, Pesky Python Removed From Lawn Of Palmetto Bay Home.

Then there was the Christmas Day (2012) removal of a 13 foot Burmese python occurred from a Palmetto Bay pool.  Long time readers of South Dade Updates may recall the posting of the NBC6 report on 12/26/2012: (CLICK HERE) to view: NBC 6 reports: A 13-foot Burmese python was captured in the swimming pool of a Palmetto Bay home.  The Miami Herald reported that this snake was located and captured at a Palmetto Bay home located off 97th Avenue and SW 183 Street on Christmas Day (the link to the Miami Herald story has expired).  

Another famous capture was on October 12, 2005, by one of Palmetto Bay's original policing unit officers, Ofc Randy DiStefano, joined the capture of a non-native python.  This capture is took place on the grounds of the current Palmetto Bay Village Hall.   

Will more snakes be identified and captured at this Palmetto Bay village hall location?  Who is going to step up and participate in the Python Challenge, 2016?

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Please provide your input as to which Logo Best Fits our New Program - "Get Fit Palmetto Bay"

1 or 3?  Or 2, Please not 5! (just kidding).  We are seeking your input.

I hope that you join with me as we embark upon an exciting new program - Get Fit Palmetto Bay. We're getting ready to launch it, but first we need your help in selecting the program logo. Please view and take the survey (CLICK HERE) Spoiler alert - I like 1 & 3 best. 

I want to hear from you!

The Village of Palmetto Bay is getting ready to launch its “Get Fit Palmetto Bay” program in 2016, a year-long series of events and programs promoting wellness, nutrition, and fitness for residents, employees, and businesses in Palmetto Bay. Help us jump-start the program by voting now for your favorite "Get Fit Palmetto Bay" logo. Online voting ends Dec. 14.

Thank you for your consideration and participation.

Eugene Flinn, Mayor
Palmetto Bay