Each moment of the year has its own beauty . . . a picture which was never before and shall never be seen again.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

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29th Annual Real Florida 5K and 10K run – February 27

Join us for the 29th annual Real Florida 5K and 10K run at Wekiwa Springs State Park on Saturday, February 27th. This is one of the few races run in a state park and one of the only ones that is almost off road. All the proceeds from the race go to the Wekiva Wilderness Trust, the nonprofit, volunteer group that supports the work of the park. To register online go to https://www.itsyourrace.com/event.aspx?id=5326

 

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Survival Boot Camp Feb 13

We will be holding our next basic survival boot camp on Saturday February 13 from 10 am to 3.30 pm. It will be at Rock Springs Run State Reserve off SR 46, Sorrento.

The course has been designed for family group participation so everyone knows what to do if a hurricane, tornado or other natural disaster destroyed their homes. Of course, all the techniques are good skills to use in the great outdoors. The boot camp will cover survival techniques, field first aid, foraging for food and water, building a shelter and lighting a fire (bow and drill technique).

Apart from water, bug spray, sun screen and lunch, I would like you each to bring the following:

About 20 feet of strong string, parachute cord or similar and two large black garbage bags.

The cost for the workshop is $10 a person payable on the day (which counts as a donation to the Wekiva Wilderness Trust) and if you have any questions please call me at 321-277-8442 or email dp@donphilpott.com

It will be fun and informative, best wishes, don

 

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Open House at the park

Like working with wild critters, educating people, conducting guided walks or just volunteering in a beautiful park. Join us at our Open House on Oct 15 from 5-30-7-30 pm to learn more. Come and meet other volunteers and learn what you can do to have fun and give back to your community and your park. Admission is free and light refreshments will be available. Meet us at the nature center. See you there.

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Turtles of Wekiwa Springs State Park July 25 * Special Event

10 am. Saturday, July 25 at the Interpretive Pavilion.

The Turtle Survival Alliance presents “Turtles of Wekiwa Springs State Park”.

Presented by Eric C. Munscher. M.S., ESIV Regional Scientist – with live turtles

This Annual Presentation is always well attended, so please plan to arrive early!

 

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New Discovery Hour program published

Check out all the exciting new Discovery Hour programs that take place every Saturday morning at the Interpretive Pavilion overlooking the spring in the park. Go to the Events page for more information or email info@wwt-cso.com.

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Wekiva PaintOut – Thank you

Many thanks to everyone who supported our 9th week-long Wekiva PaintOut – the artists, the buyers, Wekiva Island and all the volunteers who made it possible. See you all next year Feb 28-March 6 for our 10th.

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Survival Boot Camp Sat. April 25

Our next six-hour survival boot camp will be held at Rock Springs on Sat. April 25 from 10 am to 4 pm.

The course has been designed for family group participation so everyone knows what to do if a hurricane, tornado or other natural disaster destroyed their homes. Of course, all the techniques are good skills to use in the great outdoors. The boot camp will cover survival techniques, field first aid, foraging for food and water, building a shelter and lighting a fire (bow and drill technique).

Apart from water, bug spray, sun screen and lunch, I would like you each to bring the following: About 20 feet of strong string, parachute cord or similar and two large black garbage bags.

The cost for the workshop is $10 a person payable on the day (which counts as a donation to the Wekiva Wilderness Trust) and if you have any questions please call me at 321-277-8442 or email dp@donphilpott.com

It will be fun and informative, best wishes, don

 

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American Alligator

American Alligator

American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

The American Alligator inhabits the southeastern United States. Their life spans can exceed 60 yrs. Alligators occur on the Atlantic Coast of North America from Florida through coastal North Carolina, and along the Gulf Coast into Texas. They eat fish, turtles, wading birds, snakes, frogs, small mammals and even smaller alligators.

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Gray Fox

Gray Foxes (Urocyon cinereoargenteus floridanus)

Gray Foxes (Urocyon cinereoargenteus floridanus)

The gray fox is one of Florida’s most commonly seen carnivores. They feed on small animals, acorns, fruit and insects, but they will also scavenge road-killed animals. They are active at night and usually hunt alone. Gray Foxes are abundant in hardwood forests, pine-oak woodlands and brushy fields.

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Sherman’s Fox Squirrel

Sherman's Fox Squirrel (Sciurus niger shermani)

Sherman’s Fox Squirrel (Sciurus niger shermani)

Sherman’s Fox Squirrel occurs in peninsular Florida to the north end of Lake Okeechobee, and is more than twice the size of the common gray squirrel. It is probably destined for eventual “endangered” status. Fox squirrels are selective in their habitat needs. They depend mostly on pine seeds for food in the summer and on acorns during the remainder of the year.

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Barred Owl

Barred Owl (Strix varia)

Barred Owl (Strix varia)

This owl is most often seen by those who seek it out in its dark retreat, usually a thick grove of trees in lowland forest. There it rests quietly during the day. It emerges at night to feed on rodents, birds, frogs, and crayfish. It is know by it’s familiar “who-cooks-for-you, who-cooks-for-you-all” hooting.

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Florida Black Bear

Florida Black Bear (Ursus americanus floridanus)

Florida Black Bear (Ursus americanus floridanus)

The Florida black bear is the largest native land mammal in Florida. It is shy and secretive, hiding in dense vegetation and rarely seen in the wild. Bears are omnivores, meaning they eat both vegetable and animal matter. Some foods they may eat include acorns, insects, berries, saw palmetto, armadillos, honey and bee larvae.

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Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

The largest and most widespread heron in North America, the Great Blue Heron can be found along the ocean shore or the edge of a small inland pond. Though they are best known as fishers, mice constitute a large part of their diet, and they also eat insects and other small creatures.

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Raccoon

Raccoon (Procyon lotor)

Raccoon (Procyon lotor)

Raccoons can be found just about everywhere, because they will eat just about anything. They are found in forests, marshes, prairies, and even in cities. They are adaptable and use their dexterous front paws and long fingers to find and feast on a wide variety of fare. Their life span in the wild is 2 to 3 years.

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Gopher Tortoise

Gopher Tortoise (Gopherus Polyphemus)

Gopher Tortoise (Gopherus Polyphemus)

Gopher tortoises live in dry, upland habitats that have well-drained soils for them to dig their burrows. Their common habitat includes: pine flatwoods, xeric oak, sand pine, scrub oak, agricultural lands, and coastal dune and scrub. Their diet consists of grasses and legumes. The Gopher Tortoise is listed as a threatened species.

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