The wildlife along the Silver River is plentiful this time of year. On our most recent trip two bear cubs were spotted along the banks. Several different troops of monkeys were sighted, as well as the river otters.
There were large flocks of White Ibis’s, and several pairs of Black Crowned Night Herons. Other birds that you will see an abundance of are the Great Blue Heron, Lesser Blue Heron, and the Tri-Colored Heron. Snowy and American Egrets, Red Shouldered Hawks, Ospreys, pileated Woodpeckers, and King Fishers will also add to your birding experience along the Silver River.
As we head into winter, if you want to be sure to see plenty of alligators it is best to go on a warmer day with sunshine. The fall and winter months are perfect for those days when you can boat the River in the mid-day.
Until next time, see you on the Rivers!
The Rivers are beginning to show the signs of fall with foggy mornings giving way to beautiful days. This fall is going to be a historic one for the Silver River as the State of Florida assumes management of the Silver Springs Attraction, and it will now be known as the Silver Springs State Park. Tuesday, October 1, is the big day. A big day in the history of Silver Springs.
A manatee has been spotted at the Rodman Reservoir, and mullet are abundant in the Silver River. A troop of Rhesus Monkeys were sighted on the Ocklawaha River, but along the Silver they have been scarce. Changes in the water level along the River may have them up in the wooded areas, and they should be sighted more easily as the level returns to it’s norm. As always birds, gators, turtles, otters and more will captivate you with their antics on these waterways.
An intriguing time on the Silver River.. The wildlife will become even more prolific, and the day time temperatures will entice you to whiling a day away watching them. The Springs and the Silver River becoming more eco and visitor friendly. Time for Mother Nature to show off her bounty.
Change is in the air. This fall the Silver Springs Attraction will be back in the hands of the State of Florida for management, and the Springs will become a part of the Silver River State Park. Efforts are being made to preserve the head spring, and to protect the water, flora, fauna and wildlife.
As you journey along the Silver River it amazes all that this River has remained virtually uncompromised by modern expansion. There are no developments, condos, or concrete. Just the River, the Springs, and the wildlife. “Florida as it used to be ” and “The true Florida we came to see” are both comments often voiced by those who come to see this gem of Mother Nature.
There is always something new or different to enjoy. This time of year we start looking to see if the manatees will return. Just this week a manatee was spotted several times along the Silver River. Posed for a few pictures as it enjoyed the constant 72 degree water temperature. This is the third consecutive year that these rare aquatic mammals have been sighted, and we are grateful for their return. Use extreme caution while maneuvering where manatees are present.
Boaters beware of the multiple snags along the River. Recent storms and accompanying winds have created more than the norm, and several will be difficult for larger boats to navigate around.
Until next time, see you on the River!
Just another day on the river for this Silver River Manatee
The hustle and bustle of the holidays are upon us once again! Nature has a way to bring the world back in focus, and a trip up the Silver River to see the Springs can definitely remind us of what we have to be grateful for.
The Springs of the Silver River have been inspiring visitors for many generations. Your trip up the River will take you to Mammoth Spring, the largest of the spring vents. Within a short distance of this vent you will also cross many other smaller springs. Their symbolic names are often indicative of the stories that have been handed down through the years.
The Bridal Chamber Spring has one of the most fabeled stories originating in an ill fated early Indian romance (think Romeo and Juliet). The names of the other springs are just as colorful: Jacobs Well Spring; Catfish Reception Hall Spring; Oscar Spring; Ladies Parlor Spring; Devils Kitchen Spring; Alligator Hole Spring; Mastodon Bone Spring; Geyser Spring; Blue Grotto Spring; Christmas Tree Spring; Garden of Eden Spring; Indian Cave Spring; First Fishermans Paradise; No Name Cove Spring; Turtle Meadows Spring; Second Fishermans Paradise Spring; Catfish Hotel Spring; Turtle Nook Spring; Raccoon Island Spring; Shipwreck Spring; Catfish Convention Hall Spring; and Timber Spring.
We have the Floridan Aquifer to thank for the beautiful clarity of the water and the constant water temperature that draws the birds and other wildlife to the Silver River. Once they find this gem of Mother Nature they have no need to leave it. Well, a few Rhesus Monkeys have decided to tour Florida, but that is more than likely due to being kicked out of one of the many troops!
This week we spotted one of the largest Bald Eagles I have seen on the Ocklawaha River while on a fishing trip. It seemed to be quite interested in the wild shiners we use for bait. The River Otters are also being spotted frolicking in the water.
Through fall and winter the middle of the day is the best time to see the Rivers. The wildlife is more viewable when the sun is high and the temperatures warm up.
‘Til next time…see you on the Rivers!
On every trip we take up the Silver River we see something different. The gators, birds, turtles, and fishes are a constant along the River, and on almost every outing we watch the never ending antics of the Rhesus Monkeys. Each season brings with it changes to the wildlife and scenery on the River.
As fall arrives the trees drop their leafs, and foggy mornings give a surreal atmosphere to the Silver River. If you leave early, the cooler temperatures give way to the fog rising from the water. Take your trip on one of those mornings when you depart the dock immersed in the heavy fog, and have the sun break through to the wildlife beginning their day along the water. Just one of the special things about a special place.
Autumn is one of the best times for those who want to see these waterways. The temperatures become a little more friendly, and the wildlife become more visible. Many of the birds that migrate this way so enjoy the unique eco-system that only spring fed rivers offer that they take up permanent residence. The calls and songs of different birds fill the air as the bird population swells with both the permanent residents and the ‘snow birds’.
Manatees are continuing to be spotted along the lower Ocklawaha near Eureka, and the Mullet are jumping in both the Rivers. To spot the Mullet, keep an eye out for that flash of silver jumping out of the water ahead of your boat.
Currently the water level is low, and as always use caution when boating.
‘Til next time…see you on the Rivers!
Early Morning On The River