A FEW OF OUR FAVORITES IN LEE COUNTY
1 Wildlife Drive, Sanibel, FL 33957
American White Pelicans, Roseate Spoonbills, Reddish Egrets, shorebirds, waders, and ducks along the five-mile Wildlife Drive. On the trails, warblers, gnatcatchers, and maybe even a Black-Whiskered Vireo. This national treasure is a must-see stop for any birder.
Tip: Venture to the nearby Bailey Tract, also a part of the National Wildlife Refuge, to glimpse a Black-necked Stilt or a Yellow Rail.
112 Perwinkle Way, Sanibel, FL 33957
At the eastern tip of the island, at Point Ybel.
In the wooded areas and bushes, you will find passerines: orioles, buntings, warblers, and thrushes. In the fall, Peregrine Falcons, Sharp-shinned Hawks, and other raptors are out in force. Nearby, walk the beaches, collect shells, and observe a wide cast of shorebirds.
18201 John Morris Blvd, Fort Myers, FL 33908
Why go all the way to Sanibel? This is where the locals stop.
Waders, shorebirds, pelicans, plovers frequent the mud flats at low tide. Black skimmers and Magnificent Frigatebirds and Roseate Spoonbills are also common. In winter, don't be surprised to come across a Common Loon.
17980 S.R. 80, Alva, FL 33920
A taste of in-land Florida, with palmetto-oak scrub and pinewood flatlands.
Florida Scrub-Jays, Red-headed Woodpeckers, Northern Crested Caracara, and Swallow-tailed Kites are frequently seen. Kayak rentals are also available, and Caloosahatchee Regional Park is nearby, just north of the river.
7751 Penzance Blvd., Fort Myers, FL 33966
Nature center and boardwalk through a cypress-dotted slough. Guided walks are available.
Herons, egrets, Anhinga, ducks, ibises, including Scarlet Ibises, warblers, woodpeckers are abundant. One of the best places to just listen: owls, Carolina Wrens, and Blue-Gray Gnatcatchers.
Bay Street or Centennial Park 33901
Seriously good urban birding in the heart of the River District.
Along the Caloosahatchee, Lesser Scaup will bob on the water in wintertime. Kingbirds will roost on power lines. Quaker Parrots will squawk loudy overhead. Swallows and martins will give a wonderful display at twilight.
Main Street, USA
Perhaps you live in a gated community, where White Ibises gouge for grub along the fairways and Wood Storks line the ponds. Perhaps you have an Ovenbird foraging beneath your Wild Coffee along your back fence. Perhaps you have a nesting pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers in that old Slash Pine across the street.
Just open the door and get outside.