Brevard County

March 21 - May 9, 2020
Full - Contact Instructor for wait list
(Course Code: cs20-06)

Classroom Facilities Information

Erna Nixon Park
1200 Evans Rd, Melbourne, FL 32904

Barrier Island Center Sanctuary (Day 2)
8385 S. Highway A1A, Melbourne Beach, FL 32951

UF/IFAS Extension Brevard County: Office
3695 Lake Drive, Cocoa, FL 32926

Riverwalk Nature Center (Day 4)
5355 US Hwy 1, Rockledge, FL 32955

Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MINWR): Vistor Center
1987 Scrub Jay Way, Titusville, FL 32782

Instructors Information

Lead and Point of Contact: Cheryl Caldwell, Environmental Program Supervisor - Erna Nixon Park
Organization: Brevard County Parks & Recreation
Phone: 321-508-3441

Lead: Holly Abeels, Florida Sea Grant Extension Agent, UF/IFAS Brevard Co. Extension
Assistant: Mark Prynoski, Volunteer, UF/IFAS Brevard Co. Extension

Tentative Course Agenda

Day 1 Saturday, March 21, 2020 (Erna Nixon Park)
8:30am - 12:00pm Welcome, Introductions, Course Overview/Requirements, Pre-test
Coastal Systems Ecology Presentation, Beach/Dune Video
12:00pm - 1:00pm Lunch on your own
1:00pm – 5:00pm Special Guest Speaker (TBA), Marine & Estuarine Habitats presentation,
Group Project Discussion & Brainstorming/ Student Interpretive Practice

Day 2 Saturday, March 28, 2020 (Barrier Island Center Sanctuary)
8:30am - 12:00pm Beach/Dune Systems & Maritime Forest Field Trips: Maritime Hammock Trail (EEL) and BIC Boardwalk/Beach, Student Interpretive Practice
12:00pm - 1:00pm Lunch on your own
1:00pm – 5:00pm Coastal Uplands Habitats & Interpretation Presentations
Estuarine Systems Video

Day 3 Friday, April 10, 2020 (Brevard Co. Extension Office)
5:30pm - 9:00pm Coastal Waterbirds & Coastal Fish Presentations
Nearshore Marine Video
Student Interpretive Practice

Day 4 Saturday, April 11, 2020 (Riverwalk Nature Center)
8:30am - 11:30am Estuaries Field Trip with Seining Included (We’ll get WET!)
11:30am - 12:30pm Lunch on your own
12:30pm – 4:00pm Invertebrates 1 and Coastal Herptiles Presentations
Student Interpretive Practice

Day 5 Friday, April 17, 2020 (Brevard Co. Extension Office)
5:30pm - 9:00pm General Birds & Invertebrates 2 Presentations
Student Interpretive Practice

Day 6 Saturday, April 18, 2020 (No Classroom)
8:30am - 12:00pm Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge
Estuarine AND Nearshore Marine Environments Field trips: Centennial Trail & Joe Michael Trails with John Boucher, Steve & Sandee Dawdy, PINWR guides
Student Interpretive Practice
12:00pm - 1:30pm Lunch on your own
1:30pm - 3:00pm Tour of Hubbs Sea World Research Institute
3830 S Hwy. A1A Melbourne Beach 32951

Day 7 Saturday, May 2, 2020 (MINWR)
9:00am - 12:00pm Merritt Island National Wildlife Refugee
Nearshore Marine strong Environments AND Estuarine Field Trips
12:00pm - 1:00pm Lunch on your own
1:00pm – 5:00pm Mammals & Ethics Presentations
Coastal Systems & Modern Human Society Video

Day 8 Saturday, May 9, 2020 (Brevard Co. Extension Office)
9:00am - 2:00pm Group Project Presentations
Post-test & Evaluations
Graduation Ceremony and Awards
Pot Luck Luncheon


Field Trip Locations & Times may change due to unforeseen circumstances. It is the student’s responsibility to verify field information. Transportation and lunches are not included. Carpooling suggested.

Flexible Schedule: The schedule times listed are as close as possible, but we need you to be flexible. We probably will not get out early; however, we may run late. We will try to stick to the listed times, but please arrange your schedule so that the class can be flexible. Course time schedule does not include your travel time (except between AM & PM classes).

Food & Drinks! Please, absolutely no polypropylene (Styrofoam) containers—violators have to bring snacks to the hungry class the next day. Food and drinks are allowed in the classrooms.

Cell Phones: They are fine to use outside of class. Please don’t allow them to ring during classroom sessions or on field trips. Talk on the gadgets during break time, lunchtime, before and after class. Violators have to bring snacks to the hungry class the next day.

Attendance Policy:

  • You cannot miss more than 8 hours (20% of the 40 contact hours) This is a FMNP policy and cannot be modified by the Instructor.
  • To receive certification, the 8 hours or less missed must be made up by completing an assignment of equal time and content. Approval of the Instructor is required.
  • If total hours missed exceeds 8 hours, certification is not possible regardless of material made up.
  • All absences should be discussed with the instructor in advance. In case of emergencies, please notify Instructor as soon as possible.

Field Notes:
• Water is Required to be Carried with You – No Exceptions.
• Don’t wear perfume/cologne or use perfumed soap/body lotion before going out in the field. This may attract more unwanted buzzing invertebrates known as mosquitoes, midges (no see ‘ems) and flies. Hats, sunglasses, sunscreens and bug sprays are highly recommended for all field trips. We will be on the beach for 2 field trips so wear appropriate shoes, especially for Worm Rock reefs. You will be getting feet (and possibly body!) wet!
• Required: Always Wear Close-toed Shoes. The field trails are not always level or easy to travel; some plants have thorns; there may be poison ivy; fire ants, etc. Open-toed shoes are not acceptable to be worn in the field.
• Be aware that typically you will be experiencing a variety of environments. For your comfort, always bring a spare change of clothes.

Donate to FMNP Endowment

We are building a legacy of informed citizens to promote awareness, understanding, and respect of Florida's natural ecosystems. To ensure we continue inspiring conservation education and action for decades to come, we need to raise $2 million to establish an endowment for an FMNP Program Leader in perpetuity.

Ripples spread when a single pebble is dropped. Please click here if you wish to contribute to the FMNP Endowment Fund, or contact Dr. Main at to discuss options for a major gift.

Thank you for your ongoing actions to help conserve Florida’s environment so future generations may enjoy it!

The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is a federal-state-county partnership dedicated to developing knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and the life sciences, and enhancing and sustaining the quality of human life by making that information accessible. While extending into every community of the state, UF/IFAS has developed a national and international reputation for its accomplishments in teaching, research and Extension.


OCI stands for the Office of Conferences & Institutes. It is a full service conference planning agency at the University of Florida. OCI was created to support the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) mission to develop knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and to make that knowledge available to people to sustain and enhance the quality of life.

Stay Connected

Follow FMNP on Facebook and Instagram to get the latest information regarding the many different courses.



Get in Touch

  • Phone:
    (352) 294-3583
  • Email:
  • Address:
    2311 Mowry Road, Bldg. 78
    PO Box 110750
    Gainesville, FL 32611