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FLORIDA GAME AND FRESH WATER FISH COMMISSION TO MEET IN TALLAHASSEE NOV. 19 AND 20

 FLORIDA GAME AND FRESH WATER FISH COMMISSION
 TO MEET IN TALLAHASSEE NOV. 19 AND 20
 TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Nov. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- The Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission is scheduled to hold a workshop on Thursday, Nov. 19, and meeting on Friday, Nov. 20, in Tallahassee. Both the workshop, which starts at 1:30 p.m., and the meeting, which starts at 9 a.m., are open to the public.
 The Commission will tackle a crowded agenda involving a variety of topics.
 Among subjects scheduled for discussion is the proposed acquisition of a 200-400 acre gopher tortoise mitigation park in southwest Florida. Gopher tortoises are classified as a species of special concern that warrants protection because of its vulnerability to changes in its environment. Much of the tortoises' habitat in Florida has been fragmented due to urbanization and development.
 A mitigation park is a preserve designed partially to offset the loss of tortoises and their habitat due to development. Commission staff will report to the commissioners on the proposed purchase of Hickey Creek mitigation park in Lee County and other possible sites.
 Also scheduled for discussion is the status of the Fakahatchee Strand State Preserve which has been closed to deer and hog hunting since 1987 due to the poor condition and productivity of the Florida panther population, and regulatory problems. Low deer and wild hog densities may have been the cause of the panthers' poor diet and thus, their poor condition. Commission staff will report on improvements that have taken place since then.
 Commissioners also will recognize Wildlife Officer Ralph Donaldson, of Blountstown, for his 30 years of service to the Commission and will select artwork for the 1993-94 Florida waterfowl and wild turkey stamps.
 The workshop and meeting will take place in the Farris Bryant Building, 620 S. Meridian St., Tallahassee.
 -0- 11/13/92
 /CONTACT: Celeste Sanders of the Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission, 904-488-4676/ CO: Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission ST: Florida IN: SU:


AW-SS -- FL015 -- 0814 11/13/92 15:39 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 13, 1992
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