Where: In shallow water or wet soil. Found in the deeper, more frequently inundated areas. Identification: Can be very large (8-12’ tall) Best Time of Year: Small purple flowers are always paired together on a stalk with a blooming period of June-Nov. Fun facts: AKA “Fire Flag” Easily propagated by root division Host for Brazilian Skipper caterpillar
Where: Everywhere, particularly on trees Identification: 3-6 inch lizard, wide color range Best Time of Year: Any Fun facts: The exotic brown anole has driven the native green anole higher up in the trees to eat and live. Florida is home to two special lizards, the Green Anole and Brown Anole. Their names refer to […]
Where: Common at the waters edge. Identification: Snail varies in size from ping pong ball to baseball. Pink (exotic) & white (native) eggs deposits can be found above the water line. The larger and more common snails are the exotic, invasive species. Best Time of Year: All Fun facts: Tubular siphon allows the Apple Snail to […]
“Vultures — gross!” That or something similar is the typical reaction to birds that I have a growing affection for. Once you get beyond their bald heads, vultures are remarkable birds with astonishing abilities and surprising social lives. And one of the great things about being interested in vultures is that — if you live […]
The black racer is one of the more common constrictor snakes in Florida and is identifiable by its white chin. They will eat almost any animal they can overpower, including, rodents, frogs, toads, and lizards, and the racer is more likely to suffocate or crush its victim into the ground rather than coiling around it. They […]
Where: Throughout the park, but less common in dry areas. The Cabbage Palm is extremely salt-tolerant and is often seen growing near both the Atlantic Ocean coast and the Gulf of Mexico coast. Identification: The trunk can vary widely in appearance. Best Time of Year: All Fun facts: The state tree of Florida! Sabal palmetto […]
Where: Open prairies and at water’s edge for drinking. Identification: Typically black (or dark) ranging in size from piglet to boar. Best Time of Year: All Fun facts: As of 2013, the estimated population of six million feral pigs causes billions of dollars in property damage every year in the United States, both in wild […]
Where: Plants are rooted in water-saturated soils or submersed soils near the water’s edge. During low-water conditions, emersed plants can grow in exposed, damp, sediments. Identification: Swollen nodes where the leaves meet the stems. Leaves are lance-shaped, narrow, willow-like, and alternately attached. Knotweed flowers are small and pinkish or white, and grow in terminal spikes that […]
Where: Often found basking on the banks of lakes and ponds. Identification: Distinct yellow stripes on head – often mistaken for sliders, which have a red stripe.
Where: Found in swamps, coastal swamps, and floodplain forests (hydric ecosystems) Identification: Small stature of a tree often has base submerged. Best Time of Year: Flowers in spring Fun facts: Undesirable for lumber: Wood is light and weak Native Americans (Miccosukee tribe) used pop ash wood for bows and arrows (light) and its bark for “women’s medicine”.
Where: In shallow water Identification: Large pink bird with spoon-shaped bill. Best Time of Year: All Fun facts: The spoon-bill is used to forage and sift through muck for food. They present sticks to each other during courtship. Males bring materials for the nest and the female builds it. The oldest Roseate Spoonbill in Florida […]
Where: Open prairies and at water’s edge for drinking. Identification: The deer can be recognized by the characteristic white underside to its tail. It raises its tail when it is alarmed to warn the predator that it has been detected. Best Time of Year: All Fun facts: Males regrow their antlers every year, and about […]