Big Talbot Island State Park is one of a series of conservation lands along A1A on the north shore of the mouth of the St. Johns River. At the north tip of this sea island, across the road from the Sawpit Creek boat ramp, check the tidal wetlands a.k.a Spoonbill Pond for waders and shorebirds. During spring and fall migration, check the shorebird flocks for Marbled Godwit, White-rumped Sandpiper and Wilson’s Phalarope; a Ruff was found here in May 2016. Also, check the marsh by the boat ramp for Clapper Rails, Seaside Sparrow and Marsh Wren. Further south, on the east side of the road, is the Bluffs Picnic Area and the Shoreline Access Trail, which offer scenic views of the shore as well as islands in the pass. One mile further south of the Bluffs parking area (also on the east side), park and hike the Black Rock Trail; check the maritime hammock here for migratory songbirds in fall and spring, and for breeding Painted Buntings in spring and summer. Rarities such as Common Eider, Red-throated Loon, and Tropical Kingbird have been spotted at the park. Maps for all the state parks in this area may be picked up at the entrance station to Little Talbot Island State Park, south of this property on the southeast side of A1A. You may launch a kayak at the boat ramp (small fee charged) at the north tip of the park to paddle Sister’s Creek (part of the Machaba Balu Preserve) or the Atlantic Ocean side of the island. A local concessionaire has kayak rentals and offers guided kayak tours of the Talbot Islands.