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Field Trip: Camp Blanding Wildlife Management Area (Starke)
October 2 @ 8:00 am - 11:00 am
PLEASE NOTE: Attendance will be limited to no more than 20 people, and pre-registration is required. If you register and find you cannot attend, PLEASE cancel your registration to allow others to participate.
Camp Blanding WMA is 56,197 acres located in western Clay County, east of Starke. The northern half of the area is planted pine plantations with remnant mature pines that support red-cockaded woodpeckers. Bottomland hardwood forests occur along the headwaters of Black Creek. The southern half of the area includes several thousand acres of sandhills, with plentiful white-tailed deer and turkey.
Our main purpose for this trip is to visit a cluster site and learn about the life of Red-cockaded Woodpeckers. Other birds we will look for: Red-headed Woodpecker, Kestrel, Sandhill Cranes, Brown-headed Nuthatch, and Northern Bobwhite quail.
We are meeting at the intersection of Barker Rd and US-16 at 8:00 am, across the street from the main entrance of Camp Blanding Joint Training Center. PLEASE DON’T BE LATE, the gates will be locked after entry. Once we sign in and drive into the WMA, there will not be another restroom.
DO NOT GO TO THE CAMP BLANDING MAIN ENTRANCE! FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS BELOW TO OUR MEETING SPOT:
Coming from Jacksonville:
Take Blanding Blvd (SR21) south through Orange Park, and Middleburg. Continue south on SR 21 until you get to the intersection of SR 16 and SR 21. Turn Right (Heading west). Go approximately 4 miles to Barker Road (north side of road, just east of the main gate of Camp Blanding). We will meet there, then figure out riding options.
Coming from Starke:
Take SR 16 east from Starke. Continue East until you reach Camp Blanding past the junction of CR230 and CR 225 (From Lawtey). Pass the Sunoco Gas station on the right. Go approximately 1 mile, turn LEFT onto Barker Road (FWC – Camp Blanding WMA sign – Green in color). There is a gate there, it will be open for the group.
From Keystone Heights:
Take CR 21 (Blanding Blvd) NORTH until you hit SR 16 and SR 21. Turn LEFT, Go approximately 4 miles to Barker Road (north side of road — on the right as you are going west on SR 16). This will be just east of the main gate of Camp Blanding.
There is no fee, but everyone will need proper picture ID – e.g. driver’s license. Bring your binoculars, insect repellent, sunscreen, snacks and plenty of water.
COVID-19 NOTE: Masks are not mandatory per the new CDC guidelines, but for the safety of all participants and volunteers, masks and social distancing are strongly recommended. Please, no sharing of binoculars or scopes. Please do not attend if you have tested positive for COVID-19 or experienced any of the following symptoms within the last 14 days:
– A new fever
– A new cough that is not because of another illness
– A new shortness of breath that is not because of another illness
– A new sore throat that is not because of another illness
– Sore muscles not because of existing illness, or not from exercise or injury
– Diagnosis of an infection
– Exposure to someone known to be infected
– Someone you are closely associated with experiencing any of the above symptoms.
– You are currently experiencing unmanaged seasonal allergy symptoms (e.g., persistent cough, sneezing).