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CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER August 1, 2017 – Turtles of the Wekiva Wild and Scenic River System


August 1, 2017 - Turtles of the Wekiva Wild and Scenic River System

LIVE Turtle Presentation
Wekiwa Springs State Park

Tuesday, August 1, 2017
1:00 p.m.
Nature Pavilion


Turtles of the Wekiva Wild and Scenic River Live Turtle Presentation – Tuesday, 1:00 p.m.

Come hear fascinating facts and insights on the behaviors of turtles we commonly see along the Wekiva River in this 1-hour program. You will learn about aquatic turtles and what you can do to help protect turtles here and all over the world. It’s a great opportunity for a selfie with a freshwater turtle too! Presented by, Virginia Oros, Wekiva Wild and Scenic River Ambassador, Jordan Gray, and his team from the North American Freshwater Turtle Research Group and the Turtle Survival Alliance.  


Nature Center – Tuesday at 2:00 p.m.

Stay and enjoy the Wekiva Wilderness Trust Nature Pavilion where you will see a live alligator, snakes, turtles, and learn some interesting facts about these and other species. See fossils and artifacts that illustrate the area’s rich history and the abundance of wildlife found within the Wekiva Basin. Learn about the Wekiva’s diversity of flora and fauna, some of which is endangered or threatened.


Hosted by:

Wekiva Wild and Scenic River Ambassador, Wekiva River Aquatic Preserve, Friends of the Wekiva River,

Wekiwa Springs State Park, Wekiva Wilderness Trust, and Turtle Survival Alliance


June 17, 2017 – Wetland Ecology Field Course



The Friends of the Wekiva River is offering a new way to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the Wekiva Basin. This new opportunity will consist of six lessons over the next year. It will encompass various aspects of the unique ecology of the Wekiva system including a focus on springs, the river and its tributaries, unique wildlife and unique habitats. These field classes will consist of an approximately three-hour trip during all four seasons of the year. Wildlife Ecologist, Jay Exum, Ph.D., will  be the instructor.

The first class, Wetland Ecology, will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday June 17. 2017 at Seminole State Forest. Cost for the full course is $100.00 or $25.00 for individual classes. Preregistration is required. Space is limited.  Call 407-788-2619 for more information.

Meet: 7:00 p.m. SSF Bear Pond Parking Lot off SR 46.
Entrance fee: $2.00/person


January 7, 2017 – Hike to Hidden Springs of Seminole State Forest


January 7, 2017 - Hike to Hidden Springs of Seminole State Forest

Park Biologist, Ralph Risch, Park Ranger, Mike Martin and author and naturalist, Bill Belleville opened the morning with an introduction to the hidden springs of Seminole State Forest.

Twenty-five undeterred hikers, wearing various forms of rain gear from ponchos to black trash bags pilled into 4 wheel drive vehicles and headed out to personally discover hidden springs in SSF.

To see Helena Springs we trekked along a long narrow path bordered by low-growing palmettos.  We slowly descended to the wetter ground and entered a hardwood hammock.  There, before us, appeared a crystal clear pond. As we looked down we could see not only our reflection but the boil that was releasing the underground water.

In the other springs we saw the water flowing out of the rocks, forming a stream that would eventually empty into Blackwater Creek, the Wekiva River, the St Johns and finally into the Atlantic Ocean.

The morning was a gift… The group shared their interest in coming out in spite of the dismal forecast. The forest was glistening after the rain, the air, so fresh it should have been bottled!  Imagination and curiosity were stimulated. What happened thousands of years before our feet touched this ground..and the ever gnawing question,”How can I help to protect it? What is my part?”