Jelks Preserve

2300 N. River Rd., Venice, 34292
(941) 861-5000
Daily, 6:00am to sunset


This 600-acre site consists of pine flatwoods and mesic hammocks with remnant wet prairie and freshwater swamp, all bordered by the hardwood-lined Myakka River. These sandy trails will take you under canopies of bromeliad-fringed hardwoods that are home to warblers, vireos, Pileated Woodpeckers, and Barred Owls. At the river overlooks you will find Ospreys and White Ibis, egrets and herons, and sometimes Wood Storks. Take plenty of water and be sure to get a trail map from the kiosk, then explore the less-shaded scrub trails looking for Eastern Towhees and Eastern Bluebirds.

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