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Circle B Bar Reserve Part 2 Heron Hideout and Marsh Rabbit Run - Orlando / Florida Guide

Florida Guide > Places to Visit

Circle B Bar Reserve Part 2 Heron Hideout and Marsh Rabbit Run

Before reading this article, you would be well advised to read part 1 and also the article on Polk’s Nature Discovery Centre.

On my second day visit to Circle B Bar Reserve in Polk County I took the Heron Hideout and Marsh Rabbit Run trails. There were plenty of photographers around as I had gone earlier in the day to avoid walking in the noonday sun. I walked right from the car park and immediately spotted a pair of osprey trying to get some nest material to stay on the top of a tree. I watched for a while and then saw a pair of red shouldered hawks. This marsh area must normally be much wetter but there has just been a very long dry spell and in this first area there were very few wading birds as there was not much to wade in. There were a few egrets and moorhens and coots but the first stretch was fairly quiet.

As I moved past Rabbit Run Trail, the water increased and with it, the bird life, then the beauty of the marshes came into view. Numerous numbers of ibis, teal, ducks and Great Blue Herons were all busy feeding; both the air and marsh were just full of activity. With a blue sky overhead and all this around me I was reminded why I am still coming back to this state after so many years. Florida itself is so fantastic. There is no need to visit a theme park, who would not enjoy all that nature has to offer here?

I spotted a small group of very keen photographers who were busy clicking away just yards in front of me. They had a green ribbon snake on the path in front of them. They made way for me and my trusty, tiny camera so I could get a shot too. Then it was off down the path where my next sighting of interest was a sandhill crane nest with a bird sitting on top.

I saw a number of woodpeckers in this area and a wide variety of the smaller birds and eventually I arrived at Wading Bird Way. What a hive of activity that turned out to be. All the usual suspects as far as birds were concerned plus my first sighting of blue winged teal. It was beautiful.

On my return route to the Discovery Centre I saw a baby gator nest and some roseate spoonbills. What a great morning.

I decided to take a different route for my return to Kissimmee and stayed on Winter Lake Road and only took a left at Thornhill Road and then out towards Lake Alfred where I called at the Barn Antiques to enjoy one of their picnic lunches for $10 before I headed back to the villa to meet the theme park group.
The family had been to Disney’s Animal Kingdom for the day and the boys, aged 6 and 8, were full of tales of animal sightings. I didn’t tell them just how close I had come to alligators in the wild. I don’t think they would have believed me.

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