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Image of Reflection of cypress trunk and knees in the waters of Manatee Spring.


Manatee Springs State Park natural history and recreation

RV Griffin Reserve. Public water supply facilities, agriculture, wildlife habitat conservation and passive recreation characterize the diversity of the working landscape at the RV Griffin Reserve. The reserve offers vistas of pine flatwoods, freshwater marshes, wet prairies and glimpses of forested wetlands and oak hammocks. Much of the flatwoods have a sparse overstory of pines and resembles Florida dry prairie, one of North America’s most imperiled ecosystems.


RV Griffin Reserve • Southwest DeSoto County, east of North Port

Weekiwachee Preserve. The preserve provides a rich mosaic of habitats including several miles of Weeki Wachee River frontage, portions of the Mud River, dense hardwood swamps, freshwater and saltwater marshes, and pine-covered sandhills. The preserve is best known for its Florida black bear population. The bears are shy, elusive and pose no threat to people, spending most of their time deep in the forest.


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