Photo credits to Gumbo Limbo Nature Preserve
Gumbo Limbo Nature Preserve Boca Raton
Gumbo Limbo Nature Preserve is a breathtaking and unique place that lies in Boca Raton, Florida. It is home to many different plants and animals, including panthers, deer, bobcats, snakes, alligators. Gumbo Limbo Nature Preserve should be on the list of every wildlife enthusiast or nature lover that is looking for an escape from the busy city life.
It was established more than 30 years ago to preserve a natural habitat that is home to many endangered species of plants and animals. The preserve has been around for more than 30 years and is one of the most popular hiking spots in the area.
Today, Gumbo Limbo Nature Preserve protects over 3,000 acres of wetlands, pinelands and hardwood hammocks. The diversity of ecosystems it protects is an excellent representation of the everglades’ diverse and delicate ecosystems.
The preserve also includes a visitor center with an exhibit hall that displays live native animals such as alligators, snakes, turtles and birds. There are also opportunities for visitors to go on guided tours of the preserve’s trails or take part in educational programs about its natural habitats.
The facility is comprised of an indoor museum, a miniature aquarium, and a gift shop. It also houses many large, outdoor facilities including ecosystems, sea life, a footbridge trail through the neighboring woods with an observation deck and a butterfly garden.
The center organizes a variety of events that provide fascinating opportunities for visitors to observe the nesting behavior of sea turtles. Volunteers from the local community significantly assist in the operation of this center and its events, whether it be through direct observation or by assisting with event logistics.
Gumbo Limbo Nature Preserve is an area that has been designated a protected zone within the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. It comprises over 500 acres of wetlands, and is home to more than 70 species of migratory and resident birds, including the critically endangered wood stork.
In 1887, Gumbo Limbo was bought by John H. Geiger and his wife Elizabeth Geiger (née Thompson). They had moved to Key Largo from Pennsylvania in 1885 and with their purchase of the property, John H. Geiger became the island’s first permanent settler.
It was not until after the death of John H. Geiger that Elizabeth donated Gumbo Limbo to Monroe County as a nature preserve in 1964. With the help of her son-in-law, William Hutton, who is married to her daughter Anne, they were able to successfully gift this land to the county and establish it as a safe haven for natural wildlife.
Source: Gumbo Limbo Nature Preserve