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See how these gardens grow
SUNDAY: Take a self-guided tour through some of the area's most successful and beautiful Florida-friendly gardens. The Spring Garden Tour runs from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday, May 6, and starts at the Venice Beach pavilion, 101 The Esplanade, Venice.
SATURDAY: Join commissioners and your community at Indian Mound Park in Englewood May 5, to celebrate our cultural heritage. "Discover America's Hidden Gems is the theme of this year's event, sponsored by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
The Health Department's mobile medical unit will provide free and low-cost health services at 13 sites around the county in May. Services include diabetes screening and blood pressure, pregnancy, HIV and tuberculosis tests. Appointments are not needed.
The Knight Trail Park Pistol and Rifle Range is closed for up to three weeks while crews perform a lead remediation on the site. The 12-yard, 25-yard and 50-yard shooting ranges, as well as the trap, skeet and archery ranges, remain open during the cleanup.
At the Lakeview Park Clean-Up, some residents were picking up some branches of a tree when a dangerous Water Moccasin slithered out and dashed into the water. It might be useful to know one when you see it, but the differences between the venomous Florida Water Moccasin (or Cottonmouth) and the wholly harmless Water Snake can be subtle. Here are a few images and links that might help. First, here's a Water Moccasin
Another shot of a Water Moccasin (click for a huge image):
Here's the plain old harmless Florida Water Snake:
Another clue (thanks Ray):
When in water, Water Moccasins move on top of the water - almost as if they were gliding on the surface, like this:
Water Moccasins are to be met with extreme caution. "When a moccasin is nesting or has her young in their nest it will aggressively defend that area," says Ray. "Moccasins have aggressively attacked people."
Water Snakes tend to be partly submerged, partly out of the water, more like this: