Monday, March 09, 2009

Ochlochonee River State Park, Florida

Howdee all,
Today we went to the last place on the Great FloridaBirding Trail in this part of the panhandle that we havent seen yet.
Ochlockonee River State park
Ochlockonee, which means "yellow waters," is a mix of brackish, tidal surge, and fresh water. Pristine and deep, the river empties into the Gulf of Mexico.

Below is a fishing station. We didn't fish..but there are both freshwater and saltwater fish here.
Tammy...Joe would have had his fishing pole out for sure!

I took this photo for you sista Dell ...this area is much like where you live in North Carolina...sans alligator. Lots of sand no rocks. This rock retaining wall was built out of cement bags. much are cement bags...I want to build something when I get there in April.

Jeff and I hiked on just about every trail in the park. Mostly Pine woods and Oak thickets.
This park is also popular with the birders because of the resident Red-Cockaded woodpecker...
We saw the nests but didn't look very hard for the bird because we have seen lots when we visit my sister in NC.

Some pretty little flowers on the trail.

There were some really beautiful grassy areas. We arrived early afternoon..the temps were in the low 80s, so the birdies weren't very active.
Saw allot of Brown thrashers, cardinals, white-eyed vireos, chickadees, brown-headed nuthatches, yellow throated warblers, and a pair of Eagles flew over our heads talking to each other...or maybe they were talking to us....I like to think so.....very Cool.

I loved these curly grasses.

Beautiful curly Qs

I saw many of these sand mounds on the trails. How the heck did the critter make these little balls? Any Ideas? and yes Beachgrl this would be your fifth prize if you come up with the correct answer. Oh you could make the curly grasses your sixth prize...You go sista.. Of course I am also cheering on my other sisters.

Look at this cute little white squirrel. There are several at the park. These squirrels are not albinos. They are a gene mutation of the gray squirrel and are white as snow.

This park also has campsites for those who want to stay longer and wake up to the sounds of the birdies.
Jeff and I went to the coast later in the day..
Birdie coastal photos to come!
I had some digiscoping fun.

We are leaving Florida tomorrow.....It has been a wonderful three months...but its time to head norther...getting too warm here...tee hee
Come birdies...follow me to the north!
First stop Georgia.


  1. Those sand areas, paths, and 2-tracks look like great tiger beetle habitat!

  2. Such beautiful scenery and your photos look like postcard views!

    Have a safe trip!


  3. great pics!
    is that an albino squirrel?

  4. What another cool place to visit.
    I am guessing the little balls are from Florida sand Fiddler crabs, though there are other crabs (sand bubbler crab) that make the balls.
    Taken from this site (
    "Sand grains are scraped up with the downward pointing pincers and brought to the mouthparts that then sift out any tiny food particles. The shifted sand is then discarded in a little ball.

    As it eats, a little path is scraped out on the sand from the burrow entrance. Little balls of sifted sand is piled up on either side of this path. As a result, there is often a 'path' among the piles of sand grains leading from the burrow entrance.

  5. The grass is:
    Scientific Name: Ctenium aromaticus (Walter) A.W. Wood

    Common Name: Toothache Grass

  6. Oh, and it is called tooth ache grass because "The stem, when erect, has an enlarged base and contains a substance that deadens the tongue and gums when chewed" so it can be used for a tooth ache.

  7. Enjoyed reading about your visit to Ochlochonee River State park. The white squirrel is gorgeous, and I like the curly grass too. I've never been to Florida, the scenery looks lovely.

  8. This is a beautiful place. I like that curly grass. And the white squirel is totally cool.
    Have fun, and keep the rubber down.

  9. what can i say? better to read all the writing and not just look at the pretty pictures :)

  10. Well I'll be following you to Florida. I always enjoy your photos. You sound so like my sis (and kind of like me) those long walks and hikes. We had some great ones along the central coast, California...and beautiful wineries and country drives too.

  11. beetles in the bush...
    Thanks for stoppin by...I was hoping you might ID whomever made that home out of the sand balls.

    Maine birder..
    thanks .

    glad you went back and read about the white squirrel

    Beachgrl...yes sista mo prized for ya..thanks for the IDs

    Diane C...
    yes some real nice scenery...You must visit Florida sometime.

    Adele...sista you are buggin me.

    Yes I loved that grass too.

    Oh how flattering...If i sound somewhat like you. I love your blog..Maybe someday ..who knows..our paths may cross and we can do a looooooooonnnnnnnnggggggg hike...

  12. I'm not sure about the sand balls, but I'm thinking crayfish diggings.

  13. What great sights you saw here. I would love to see some white squirrels like that someday.

  14. oooh.. love the pics of the path... the grass looks like it is blowing in the breeze... i can ALMOST feel it on my face... and the white squirrel... adorable... not too good at hiding though... i mean, that thing stands out BIGTIME...

  15. Looks like a crawfish mound to me


ok what do you really think?????