Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive (Florida) Birds, Alligators

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The Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive is a one-way, 11-mile drive meandering through the Lake Apopka North Shore. It begins at Lust Road and ends on Jones Avenue in Apopka, Florida.

The drive is open Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and federal holidays between sunrise and sunset. The speed limit is 10 mph.

Restrooms are provided at multiple locations. No drinking water is provided. Dogs are allowed but must be leashed at all times. Stopping is limited to designated pull-outs provided along the length of the drive.

Lake Apopka North Shore offers extraordinary bird-watching opportunities. It is one of the top three birding areas for the entire state including Everglades National Park and Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge.

During the winter months, more than 150 species regularly use the property, from showy herons and egrets to numerous tiny warblers and flycatchers.

The bird list continues to grow and includes 362 species. Other wildlife routinely seen include numerous American alligators, turtles, river otters, bobcats and coyotes.

This 11-mile, one-way drive opened in May 2015 with the goal of providing visitors an opportunity to explore the wildlife and natural systems found within this incredible network of wetlands, levees, and canals.

Some conspicuous species on the Lake Apopka North Shore include osprey, anhinga, Gallinule, Great Blue Heron, Black-necked Stilt, Red-winged Blackbird and Red-shouldered Hawk.

Less conspicuous but seasonally present in healthy numbers are the American bittern, sora rail, black-bellied and fulvous whistling duck.

Songbirds are also abundant and include swamp sparrows, marsh wrens, and if you are lucky, painted buntings.

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