Volunteer Tasks  Updated January 2024

Cub Crawl

With funding from the Friends of Carlton and help from our volunteers,  Cub Crawl was expanded this year. Despite heavy rains on the day of the event, children ages 3-9 completed 11 stations to learn about animal methods of locomotion, receive a certificate of completion and choose stuffed animal.

Programs

Friends of the Carlton invited the public to join them for Q and A sessions with invited speakers: Boyce Blackmon's anecdotes from his personal history in the Carlton during a 35 year hunt lease: Jay Bailey's role in using prescribed fire as a land management tool; Chris Oliver's discussion of the Myakka River's  "Wild and Scenic" designation. 

Sam with rooster that was abandoned in the parking lot.
Sam with rooster that was abandoned in the parking lot.

Cabin Docents and Visitor Services 

--Docents have been in the cabin an average of 5 days per week, meeting an average of 10-12 visitors on weekdays, and 20+ on weekends. They provide free maps and free water, advice on trail conditions, destinations and duration as well as flora, fauna, history, camping, paddling, and biking opportunities.

—They also reported and monitored a bat colony and rodent infestation and provided a bat house option on the perimeter of the wetland. 

—A new vacuum helped keep the floors and cabinets swept. 

—Volunteers also washed windows and cleaned glass surfaces. When staff replaced the AC ductwork, volunteers disposed of a leaking case of maple syrup stored in the attic.

—Volunteers also monitor the gray and black water tanks in the Clivus self-composting restroom,  report general conditions, supply shortages, prepare the bathroom for pressure washing by sweeping down cobwebs, clean ventilation screens, repaint walls, floors, and ceilings. 

 

Named trail signs and parking bumpers repainted.
Named trail signs and parking bumpers repainted.

Markers, Signs and Kiosks

—Volunteers reported missing or damaged  trail markers.

—Ten+ “Named Trail” signs with routed lettering were removed/replaced and repainted by hand after staff pressure washed them.  

—Metal signs informational and the two entrance signs were scrubbed to remove mold and dirt. —Volunteers prepared a template and repainted the routed arrows after staff replaced a routed trail marker.

—The tops of security posts on entrance/exit roads were painted (white) for better visibility.

—Traffic stops were repainted (yellow and blue) in main parking lot.

—Funded by Friends of the Carlton, volunteers constructed and placed a dozen “You Are Here” map kiosks at remote locations.

—All the map kiosks were scrubbed.

—The kiosk in the main parking lot was reframed with wood.

—The 6 sided kiosks in front of the cabin (funded by Friends of the Carlton) was cleaned, re-padded and refilled with freshly laminated posters and maps.and parking stops being 

Hazard: 4' hole on water  line.  Picnic table at Tucker's Camp pressure washed.
Hazard: 4' hole on water line. Picnic table at Tucker's Camp pressure washed.

Trails

—Hog damage was rake-smoothed on portions of the loop trails as well as in front of the cabin.

—Volunteers helped staff remove charred brush from paver block and loop trails after the wildfire. 

—They used a rolling magnet to pick up screws and nails that were causing bike tire flats where a footbridge had burned. 

—Volunteers used rocks to bolster culvert north of the cabin.

—GPSed, inspected and informed staff of bench and table locations for disposal, repair, pressure washing

—GPSed and reported instances of culvert collapse, compromised gates, fencing and other hazards.

--GPSed replaced/repaired/weedwhacked all markers, walkthroughs, benches, tables, You Are Here signs, and well monitoring stations in the Carlton and Big Slough.

--Repainted all totems and  in the PUF area as wells as all named trail signs, marker posts and routed numbers.

Fire Fest favorites: face painting and Florida Native Plant Society
Fire Fest favorites: face painting and Florida Native Plant Society

Fire Fest

—Volunteers helped exhibitors set up chairs and tables.

—They assisted with parking.

—Greeted, counted, and directed visitors and provided visitor feedback to staff after the event.

—Provided narration on the hayride (hay wagon purchased by Friends of the Carlton).

—Manned an information booth with maps and information 

—Assisted in the “knockdown” at the end of the day.

—Provided a photographer and posted 135 event photos on the website.s

Fire Fest hayride on a  cold and blustery day.
Fire Fest hayride on a cold and blustery day.
Trail camera captures feral hog with crow riding on his back.
Trail camera captures feral hog with crow riding on his back.

Invasives

—Volunteers continued to gather and sequester endangered bromeliads from weevils in cages (funded by Friends of the Carlton)

—Placed seeds, seedlings and fallen plants in protected locations.

—Shared seeds for germination and storage by researchers at Selby Gardens.

 

—Posted on iNaturalist instances of weevil infestation.

—Photographed and geo-located for staff over 75 locations of  cogon grass, pepper tree, melaleuca and lygodium to be treated.

—Shared trail camera information with feral hog program staff member from the U.S.D.A.

Atamasco lilies emerge 10 days after prescribed burn.
Atamasco lilies emerge 10 days after prescribed burn.

 

Flora and Fauna

—Maintained and shared on websites trail camera pictures of wildlife (website and cameras funded by Friends of the Carlton).

—Shared pictures of wildflowers currently in bloom, with common and botanical names.

—Posted on iNaturalist unusual or endangered species such as a night blooming water lily.

—Assisted resource protection by reporting poachers and collectors.

Makeshift dam--felled palms and river boulders on "Wild & Scenic" Myakka River
Makeshift dam--felled palms and river boulders on "Wild & Scenic" Myakka River

 Wild and Scenic River  

—Helped monitor border along the Myakka River for undesignated camping, illegal hunting, chainsawing of trees, illegal collection and poaching. 

—Assisted law enforcement with time, best access path and exact location—(multiple campers were directed to bag their garbage for removal by staff).

—Cleaned up undesignated campsites, deconstruct sleeping and fish cleaning platforms.

—Restored river passage by removing makeshift dam constructed from (chainsawed) palm logs and limestone boulders. 

—Posted biodegradable “Leave No Trace” cards at sites.

—Monitored and reported kayak launch vandalism, overnight use 

Chainsawed trees in "Wild & Scenic" Myakka R. floodplain
Chainsawed trees in "Wild & Scenic" Myakka R. floodplain

President: Linda@carltonreserve.org

 

Treasurer: Dan@carltonreserve.org

 

Website & Info: Sherm@carltonreserve.org

  

Park Naturalist

 Meghan Harris Meyer 

mmmeyer@scgov.net

  

Anyplace America.com

Link to searchable U.S. map resources with parks, trails, campgrounds, historical sites, marinas, etc.

 

 

Sarasota County

Field Guide

to Conservation Lands

(download 64pp. PDF)

Field Guide.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document 3.8 MB

SARASOTA WEATHER

 

Friends of Carlton Reserve

is a chapter of  FOSCP   

not for profit corp.