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I went on a local river cruise with my photography club over the weekend. I know it's not the 3 hour 2 week vacations that many have planned, but we did get to see the beautiful central Florida scenery that is along the St. John's River in DeLand, FL. Not much in the way of mammals and reptiles, but we did get to do a lot of birding and a lot of just enjoying the scenic cypress forests. We took a tour through Blue Heron River Cruises just outside of DeLand and spend two hours on the river learning about different plants and the animals that we saw. Our captain was very knowledgeable about the area and knew that us photographers wanted the best shots we could get and did his best to get us as close as the animals would allow. Only saw a couple alligators, but saw many birds including Limpkins, Wood Storks, and a Swallow-tailed Kite which had just arrived from South America according to our captain. I plan to go again in fall when they see manatees and the season brings new things to see. I know it's not an exotic safari, but I can't wait to share the photos from my local safari of my little corner of Florida.
With the controversial new bill last passed in Florida, in order to harvest some few black bear in the state, we can point a positive new: black bear are back in many stated where they were once on the brink of the extinction. Nat Geo published an article, exposing the situation about this charismatic species endemic of Northern America. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/06/150626-black-bears-animals-science-nation-conservation/ The article points out: I have been happily surprised to note there could be nowadays more bears than in the 1600s:
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