Saturday, 29 November 2008:
Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, National Audubon Society, southwest of Naples, Florida.
The sanctuary was established to preserve a large stand of Bald Cypress which suffered extensive logging in the 1940’s and 50’s. The sanctuary is also an important breeding ground for wood storks, and part of the 2 1/2 mile boardwalk is closed off during breeding season.
astors on a vine, a strangler fig, and a grass-like flower
We might have seen more birds and wildlife if we’d been there in early morning, but the walk was beautiful. There were many butterflies, dragonflies, spiders (which built webs seemingly suspended from nowhere—I was glad not to be the first person to walk the trail in early morning), a couple of deer, anoles (or are they skinks?), frogs (one dead), an very large alligator, a couple of hawks, a green heron, a great egret, some anhingas, a snake (which looked huge to me when I almost stepped on it, but Mr. Tess said it was thinner than a pencil), and not so many other tourists.
The elevated boardwalk made the hike very easy and allowed us to see what a wild Florida looked like before all the development and agribusiness. Take a virtual tour yourself through pine flatwood, wet prairie, pond cypress, marsh, and lettuce lakes.