The Anna Maria Island Sun Newspaper

Vol. 14 No. 10 - January 1, 2014


‘Flippers and Feathers’ activity book debuts

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story


From left, artist Lori Kee and authors Mary Lechleidner
and Susan Anderson work on “Flippers and Feathers.”

BRADENTON BEACH – A new activity book published by Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring is a fun way to teach kids about protecting turtles and birds, their BFFs.

“Flippers and Feathers: Our Beach Friends Forever,” written by Mary Lechleidner and Susan Anderson, with graphic design by Elsa Kauffman, features the illustrations of Holmes Beach Deputy City Clerk Lori Kee and a special piece of artwork by Sasha Madrid, 11, who designed the Beach Friends Forever Badge.

Readers earn the badge at the end of the book by taking the BFF pledge to pick up beach toys at the end of the day, fill in holes made in the sand, remind parents to leave balloons and plastic bags at home because they can look like food for turtles and shorebirds, and dispose of trash properly, including fishing line.

Activities explain the purpose of staking out turtle nests and bird nesting areas and why leaving things on the beach at night is dangerous for turtles, also reminding beachgoers to steer clear of nesting birds and posted shorebird areas and never feed birds, among other wildlife tips.

If the title “Flippers and Feathers” sounds familiar, it’s the title of the blog that Turtle Watch Director Suzi Fox writes on The Sun’s website, and the title of a weekly tips feature in The Sun on sharing the beach with turtles and birds during nesting season, May 1 to Oct. 31.

The book was produced with funding from the Tampa Bay Estuary Program and the Roney-Cadarette family.

The books will be distributed to all Island businesses this month. For more information about Turtle Watch, visit

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