Tag Archives: Cranes

St. Augustine Alligator Farm

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If you enjoy birding, the St. Augustine Alligator Farm is a great feast for the eyes during the spring roosting season. I went last year on an outing, photographers can get a pass and enter the park earlier than the other visitors to get good shots of the wild wading birds that roost there (say that last part 5 times fast). Anyway, you’ll get out of your car and see photogs with no kidding lens bigger than their entire trunk enter the park. It’s quite amazing and for my first visit I was not sure what to expect, but it is a treat for a birder. Here’s some information on the rookery. I went this year with my youngest to visit the park and it just happened to fall during nesting season which was a nice treat for me. I got to educate some of the other parents as we walked through the swampy area of the park, home to hundreds of alligators. Truly it’s an impressive sight and admittedly a bit disturbing, I’m quite sure I would not love it if I had smaller children. You walk over a relatively low walkway through a swamp area and pretty much everywhere there are gators. They have these huge beautiful live oaks and it’s in the oaks where the magic is…literally hundreds of birds are nesting over the alligator infested swamp. I was told when I asked last year, why on earth the wild birds thought to nest there and was told that it’s a safe environment from other natural predators, meaning if they manage not to have their babies plop into the mouths of the waiting alligators, they will be safe as you can be sure other predators, like racoons, foxes, etc. are not visiting there. Anyway, it is a stunning display and if you are ever in Florida during the spring I say it’s a must visit. These guys are Snowy Egrets.

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