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"Ding" Darling Wildlife Society Newsletter
August 18, 2016
In This Issue
The Refuge is looking for a Resident Volunteer couple for the 2016-17 season. Resident volunteers receive free RV parking/hook up and other benefits in exchange for work hours. Specialized skill sets are required, including maintenance work and visitor program presentations. Please email your resume to Ranger Jeff Combs.
We're the Best!
Congratulations "Ding" Darling Refuge for winning the 2016 award for Best Nature/Wildlife Area from Gulfshore Life magazine. Refuge Manager Paul Tritaik proudly shows it off.

Join more than 25,000 supporters who have signed the Now or Neverglades Declaration to #FixFlorida. "I support the 200-plus Everglades scientists who believe that increased storage, treatment and conveyance of water south of Lake Okeechobee is essential to stop the damaging discharges to the coastal estuaries; to restore the flow of clean, fresh water to Everglades National Park, Florida Bay and the Florida Keys; to improve the health of Lake Okeechobee; and to protect the drinking water for 8 million Floridians living in READ MORE

(Above) This 1923 political cartoon by Jay Norwood "Ding" Darling had two titles: "What man does to one of the most beautiful gifts of nature - the river" and "How we poison our rivers." Click on the cartoon to see it enlarged.  
August voting is about to begin in Florida. Please spread the word to vote in favor of solar energy in the August 30 Florida primary election. Lower the cost of energy simply by voting YES on Amendment 4. The proposed amendment, if passed, will exempt solar systems from the burdensome tangible personal property tax for a period of 20 years. Click here  for more information.
The new DDWS site showcases vivid wildlife imagery.
Whether you are viewing it from a full desktop screen, tablet, or smart phone, the newly debuted web site for the "Ding" Darling Wildlife Society will react to your device with imagery that pops and navigation that gets you immediately to the information you need. Many months in the making, the new site, designed by Sanibel Island's own Brightstreet Group, debuted with a soft opening on August 3, 2016.

"We've given it a test spin and let our board, staff, and other friends try it out before we make the formal announcement," said READ MORE

Click here to visit the new site.
Manatees by Mac Stone
Mac Stone, a natural history and conservation photographer from Gainesville, Florida, spent nearly four years living and photographing in the Florida Everglades while working on his book Everglades: America's Wetland. He is known for his stunning underwater photography and will be lending his camera art to our upcoming Smithsonian Water/Ways exhibit with a photographic presentation and ongoing display.

His water-related images will hang in the Visitor & Education Center Auditorium throughout the Water/Ways exhibit, October 28 through December 8. His lecture, "Under Water in the Everglades," will also take place in the auditorium at 1 p.m. on Friday, November 18, as part of Water/Ways' bi-weekly "Soak-It-In Speakers Series." Click here  
 to learn more about events and activities surrounding Water/Ways coming to "Ding" Darling. 
International Birders Film Festival

Part of the "all things birds" celebration of the Migratory Bird Treaty Centennial, the 27th annual "Ding" Days, October 16-22, will feature a free, daylong International Birders Film Festival on Thursday, October 20, in the Visitor & Education Center Auditorium. The film festival kicks off at 9:15 a.m. with "Birds of North America." Four films follow: "Birds of South READ MORE


John & Beth Newland   

 Jim & Patty Sprankle  
Wayne & Linda Boyd


"Ding" Days Sponsor Showcase
Escape to your vacation paradise. Over 425 feet of Gulf footage on 6 1/2 acres, this relaxed seaside resort is only 2 miles from "Ding"

Bailey's General Store: A true taste of Sanibel since 1899: A grocery and hardware store at the heart of a diverse shopping center
A Nature Decorator's Touch
Add a touch of wildlife style to your d�cor with sturdy, zippered, washable pillow 
covers in designs from batik fish to colorful owls. The 18 x 18 slips cost $25.99 each; 19 x 24, $29.99. To mail-order your pillow slips, email or call 239-472-1100 ext. 241. 

All proceeds from Nature Store sales go directly to the Refuge for educational programs and wildlife research.
Lee County Voter?  Vote YES for 20/20 on November 8th, 2016.  It is an opportunity for citizens to help safeguard Lee County's long-term economic and environmental sustainability and quality of life through continuing to protect the County's exceptional natural resources.  Click HERE to learn more. 

In each issue of "Ding" on the Wing, we showcase one of more than 560 refuges in the U.S.A. 
Quino Checkerspot

Location: This 11,152-acre refuge encompasses the eastern Chula, Jamul, and Spring Valley regions around San Diego.

Totemic Fauna: Endangered Quino Checkerspot butterfly, endangered California Gnatcatcher and Least Bell's Vireo, Belding's Savannah Sparrow

Fun for the Family: Hiking, biking, birding, and horseback riding

Visitor's Tip: One Saturday out of the month, the Refuge leads a "Hike with a Ranger" program.
Tarpon Bay Explorers September Discounts 

Tarpon Bay Explorers is offering 25% discounts on all rentals and tours for residents of Lee, Charlotte, and Collier County
 during September. Paddle a kayak through the mangrove tunnels, ride a bike through the

heart of the Refuge on Wildlife Drive, look for dolphins and manatees with a bird's eye view from a paddleboard, or go fishing on a pontoon boat in Refuge back bay waters. Kayak, canoe, paddleboard, and bike rentals are available on a first-come basis. Motorized canoes and pontoons and all tours require a reservation at 239-472-8900.

Please bring your Florida I.D. to verify your residency.

Click on the cartoon to see it enlarged
Help Save This Land
"Ding" Darling Wildlife Society takes on campaign to acquire 8+ acres on Sanibel Island

Jay N. "Ding" Darling, our Refuge namesake, recognized the importance of conserving land resources already in the 1930s, when he penned this political cartoon for the Des Moines Register. He named it "How rich will we be when we have converted all our forests, all our soil, all our water resources and all our minerals into cash?Darling went on to win two Pulitzer Prizes and, as head of the U.S. Biological Survey (forerunner of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service), introduced the Federal Duck Stamp Program to allow the government to purchase land for the National Wildlife Refuge System.

In the spirit of "Ding" Darling, we ask you to help preserve fragile habitat on Sanibel Island. This property, located on Wulfert Road and just beyond the exit of the Refuge's Wildlife Drive, is a crucial wildlife corridor. We must raise $2 million in private funds to purchase the parcel, which lies between SCCF land and the Refuge. Donors have already 
"Ding" Darling at work
committed $600,000 of needed funds, so the goal is to raise the remaining $1.4 million by February 2017.  If not preserved by the Refuge, READ MORE

To make a gift or multi-year pledge or for more information, contact DDWS Executive Director Birgie Miller at 239-292-0566 or by email.   

Did you know that a group of Roseate Spoonbills is called a "bowl?" That means that in Southwest Florida, you won't find a POT of gold under a rainbow, you'll find a BOWL of Spoonbills!

Thanks to Liz Noffsinger for capturing this stunning photo after a rainstorm. 

To see more wildlife photos like this one, click on our social media links:

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If you have taken any beautiful, interesting, or just plain goofy photos taken at the Refuge, send them to Society intern Carrie Alexander for a chance to be featured in upcoming newsletters.
27th Annual "Ding" Darling Days - October 16-22, 2016
Smithsonian Water/Ways Exhibit - Oct.28-December 8, 20
Kids Fishing Derby - November 28, 2016
Happy Hour Holiday Shopping - November 30, 2016
DDWS Annual Meeting - December 7, 2016
Volunteer Holiday Luncheon - December 9, 2016
Biweekly Wednesday Film Series (Sponsored by Sanibel Captiva Beach Resorts) - January 4-April 12, 2017
Weekly Friday Lecture Series - (Sponsored by HighTower/Thomas and Swartz Wealth Management January 20-April 14, 2017
Go Wild for "Ding" - February 8, 2017
Volunteer Awards Luncheon - February 10, 2017
These are just snapshots of some of the things taking place at your Wildlife Refuge.  Please check our website at www.dingdarlingsociety.org to learn more!

Birgit Miller, Executive Director

"Ding" On The Wing composed by Chelle Koster Walton.  Designed by Sarah Lathrop and intern Carrie Alexander
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