Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Our Trip to Big Cypress and Everglades

The Strangler Fig is a vine-like tree that begins as an epiphyte, an air plant, when the seed is deposited in the upper part of a host tree. After the seed sprouts, it sends down roots that entwine or strangle and often kill the host tree. When the roots reach the ground, the tree changes to a terrestrial plant. This native fig can reach heights of 60 feet.

A coconut palm - these are becoming obsolete. No one is allowed to plant them anymore due to coconuts falling or becoming missiles during hurricanes.

This is where we had our picnic today

One of the larger alligators we saw at Oasis Visitor Center

This morning we headed south on I-75 – destination Everglades. We got off I-75 just south of Naples and took Hwy 41 to Everglades City and then continued on to Chokoloskee Island where we had a picnic lunch that I had packed.

We then continued east on Hwy 41 towards the Everglades stopping now and then to take pictures, one of our stops was Big Cypress Bend Boardwalk. We did the walk and Gordon got a photo of a Bald Eagle. It was too far away for my camera unfortunately.

Probably our greatest find was at the Oasis Visitor Center where they had a boardwalk and lots and lots of alligators in the water beside the boardwalk, some VERY large. We are not concerned now about not seeing alligators in the wild. We continued east and saw lots of alligators in the water along the road. We also saw quite a few birds. We took a short detour onto a road called Loop Road for about 8 miles and saw more alligators and birds. Most of what we saw was in Big Cypress National Preserve. We only got a short way into Everglades National Park. It’s a long drive even from Fort Myers!

We turned around and came home, only stopping to pick up Gordon’s computer so he could download his photos and then went for dinner at the local Perkins. So now we’re home and very tired!

Since our arrival in Fort Myers nearly four weeks ago, diesel fuel has increased in price by 15 cents as we found out this morning when we went to get fueled up for our trip.

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