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Volusia County Plans Free Explore Volusia Programs

By on February 20, 2018 in Community Stories

Volusia County, FL-Learn about Volusia County’s conservation lands and land management practices during free Explore Volusia programs in March. Environmental specialists will lead guided hikes, paddling trips, eco-buggy tours and bike-abouts.

Reservations are required; call 386-736-5927.

Upcoming events include:

Bike-about Lake Beresford: 9 to 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 6. Ride the Lake Beresford Park Trail and a segment of the Spring-to-Spring Trail. Participants will learn about the local environment and the importance of protecting the water quality of Florida’s springs. The emphasis will be on the connectivity of local water bodies. Wear a helmet and bring a bicycle. Meet at Lake Beresford Park, 2100 Fatio Road, DeLand.

Eco-buggy tour: 9 to 11 a.m. Thursday, March 8. Ride through the pine flatwoods, cypress swamps and marsh of Lake George State Forest, which has the second highest population of bald eagles in the lower 48 states. Meet at 998 Ninemile Point Road, Seville.

Marine mammal mayhem: 9 to 11 a.m. Wednesday, March 14. Join manatee expert Debbie Wingfield at Indian River Lagoon Preserve Park to learn about marine mammals and take a short hike to search for them. Participants will test water for microplastics and learn about the importance of recycling monofilament. Meet at 700 Sandpiper St., New Smyrna Beach.

Night paddle: 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday, March 15. Skilled paddlers can explore the Indian River Lagoon and witness its beauty under the night sky. Participants may see and hear a variety of organisms including the horseshoe crab, whose blue blood saves lives. Bring a kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard along with a flashlight, life preserver, and whistle. Meet at Menard-May Park, 413 S. Riverside Drive, Edgewater.

Bike-about Palm Bluff: 9 to 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 20. Take a ride through the Palm Bluff Conservation Area and explore the eight distinct natural plant communities. Visitors may see a variety of species, including bluebirds, brown-headed nuthatch, turkeys, wading birds, and raptors. Wear a helmet and bring a bicycle. Large-tired bikes are recommended. Meet in Samsula at the parking area east of County Road 415, 9.5 miles south of State Road 44 and 1.9 miles north of Howland Boulevard.

Waterbody paddle: 9 to 11 a.m. Friday, March 23. Take a paddle through the ponds near the Ormond Beach Environmental Discovery Center. Participants will see a variety of birds and plant life. Learn about the ecological importance of the ponds and take a tour of the environmental center. Bring a kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard along with a flashlight, life preserver, and whistle. Meet at 601 Fleming Ave., Ormond Beach.

Turkey talk: 8 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday, March 24. Naturalist Ed Northey will describe the habits and vocalizations of our native subspecies of wild eastern turkey, the Osceola. Participants will learn a myriad of calls, then hike into turkey habitat using the calls to entice a tom to respond. They will also use the calls of crows and owls while learning about their role in the spring woods. Meet at Deep Creek Preserve, 964 S. State Road 415, New Smyrna Beach.

Eco-buggy tour: 9 to 11 a.m. Wednesday, March 28. Take a riding tour of Deep Creek Preserve and learn about its important plant communities. Participants may see Volusia County’s endemic paw paw in bloom, carnivorous plants and Sherman’s fox squirrel. Meet at 964 S. State Road 415, New Smyrna Beach.

Volusia County’s Environmental Management Division sponsors Explore Volusia to acquaint residents with the county’s diverse natural habitats and land management practices.

Participants should bring water and insect repellent. They should wear comfortable clothes and hiking or walking shoes.

Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017

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