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FAU Preserve Trail Sign Competition

February 8, 2011

SEEDS (student organization = Strategies for Ecology Education, Diversity and Sustainability) and the Environmental Sciences Program would like to invite you to participate in the creation of signage for a nature trail in the FAU Ecological Preserve. We need FAU students to write and submit a short paragraph about a plant or animal species from the list provided on the back of this page. If your paragraph is chosen it will appear, along with your name, on one of the descriptive signs set along the campus nature trail.

The preserve is located on the northwest corner of the Boca Raton campus adjacent to lot 5, just west of the PBCC campus. It is a rich collection of wild and plant life. In recent times, this beautiful natural area was accessible only to the adventurous, but following the completion of the nature trail and the assembly of the signage project (both are expected to be near completion Earth Day 2011, with the full experience anticipated for Fall 2011), this jewel of FAU will be open and accessible to anyone seeking refuge from the bustling halls of the breezeway and the clamor of student life.  The winning entries will also be on display during our Earth Day 2011 launch party on the opening day of the nature trail. Don’t pass up this opportunity to be recognized as an integral part of FAU’s most important heritage.

Guidelines: We encourage creative writing that will provide insight into the native flora and fauna that any trail goer might encounter. Creative pieces and poetry are sought, as well as science-minded pieces. The work should be a maximum of 250 words and if sources are used, they must be cited as plagiarism is strictly prohibited. This should be an expression of your unique interpretation of the subject.

Send Paragraphs and inquiries to: (please include “Nature Trail Paragraph” in the title)

Deadlines:                                                                                                                                                                            Entries must be received by April 15, 2011. However, we encourage early submission for the best chance of acceptance. No late entries will be accepted.

Eligibility: Any FAU graduate, undergraduate student or faculty may submit their writing. Multiple submissions are encouraged.

Process: Upon submission the officers of SEEDS and faculty of the Environmental Sciences Program will review the writing based upon quality and content. Winning authors will be contacted via e-mail to discuss any revisions and subsequent publication.

List of Animals for Signage:

Raccoon (Procyon lotor) , Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus), Gopher Frog (Rana capito), Black Racer (Coluber constrictor priapus), Eastern Coachwhip (Masticophis flagellum flagellum), Green Anole (Anolis carolinensus), Brown Anole (Anolis sagrei), Rough Green Snake (Opheodrys aestivus), Eastern Gray Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis), Florida Mouse (Podomys floridanus)

List of Plants for Signage:

Saw Palmetto (Serenoa repens), Pricklypear Cactus (Opuntia humifusa), Gumbo Limbo (Bursera simaruba), Sand Live Oak (Quercus geminata), Cabbage Palm (Sabal palmetto),  Hog Plum (Prunus umbellate), Bamboo Vine (Smilax laurifolia), Muscadine (Vitis rotundifolia), Beauty berry (Callicarpaamericana), Wild coffee (Psychotria nervosa)

Information that might be included:

Range, legal status, natural history, life span, appearance (size, shape, color), habitat, diet, problems facing the species including habitat loss, predation by exotic species, etc. (This is particularly interesting and important information in regards to the FAU preserve), predators, reproduction, social structure, activity level and times, behavioral characteristics, differences between males and females, species interactions (e.g. commensal species), edible/poisonous (for plants)


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