Thursday, April 2, 2015

Six Mile Cypress Slough

Boardwalk Trail

We took advantage of the cooler weekend to finally get in a little hiking.

Six Mile Cypress Slough

Just a few miles away from us is Six Mile Cypress Slough, a Lee County Park.

This swamp-like area is home to numerous birds, as well as alligators, turtles, and even wild pigs!



We stopped into the Visitor Center first, where we learned that the best possibilities for wildlife viewing along the 1.25 mile boardwalk is when you walk very slowly and quietly.

Boardwalk Trail

From the Visitor Center, we started out on the boardwalk trail.  Walking slowly wouldn’t be a problem – lots of time for taking pictures – but quiet might be difficult with the number of people on the trail!

Walking along the boardwalk trail


And if the noise didn’t scare the wildlife away, Bryce’s bright shoes might!!




The other thing they stressed in the Visitor Center was to “stay on the boardwalk” . . . kindof makes you wonder why they left off the railing on one side . . .


Hey, there's no railing on one side!

Our first stop was an overlook at Gator Lake.

Observation Deck

The lake was surrounded by cattails and trees – a perfect nesting area for many shorebirds.     Gator Lake

We saw egrets, herons, ibis, and others that we couldn’t quite identify.



While we were at the overlook, this alligator leaped up onto the floating dock!

Gator in the sun

Around the corner, at the next viewing platform, we had an even better view!

A better angle

These blue herons were having a great time – chasing each other along the surface of the lake!

Two Great Blue Herons

Into the slough


From Gator Lake, we continued along the boardwalk, into the slough.




The trees were covered with an amazing number of airplants,


some small, and some rally big!

Giant Airplant

Others were blooming . . . some more than others!

Blooming airplant


Another beautiful airplant

As we continued along the boardwalk, we moved into the cypress swamp.

Cypress Swamp


In addition to the cypress trees, there were also a lot of palm trees . . . it seemed very appropriate on Palm Sunday!

Palms on Palm Sunday

There were also several ponds throughout the slough, and turtles were a common occupant.

Turtles on a log

Another turtle










At one of the ponds, an anhinga was drying his feathers, while several turtles soaked up the sun.

Anhinga and turtles

Sun through the trees


It was the perfect morning for a leisurely hike – comfortably cool, but with the sun peeking through the trees, you didn’t feel cold at all.


We continued on, and eventually came across some people intently watching a pile of brush that was moving like there was something moving around under it.  They had spotted a group of baby wild pigs that live in the slough.

We had to wait quite a while, but eventually one of the babies peeked its head out!

Little wild pigs

It was a beautiful morning, and we greatly enjoyed our walk on the boardwalk!


  1. Nice getting out in the Florida swamp!!! Like that they made a ramp for the alligator;o)

  2. I guess by having a sun platform in the pond it helps to keep the gators off the path.
    Hope you weren't too close to the baby pigs because the mothers are vicious when protecting their young.
    Overall it looked like you had a nice day.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

  3. We saw that when we were in the area but didn't have time to's on the list for the next time :-). Safe travels north.


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