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St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge: Wikis

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Coordinates: 30°07′00″N 84°15′00″W / 30.1166667°N 84.25°W / 30.1166667; -84.25

St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge shoreline near Lighthouse
Heron at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge

St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge is one of the oldest wildlife refuges in the United States. Established in 1931 as a wintering ground for migratory birds, it encompasses 68,000 acres (280 km²) spread between Wakulla, Jefferson, and Taylor Counties in the state of Florida.

The refuge includes several Gulf of Mexico coastal habitats, such as saltwater marshes, islands, tidal creeks, and the estuaries of seven north Florida rivers. It is home to a diverse range of plant and animal life and also has a long history of human use, including structures such as the St. Marks Lighthouse, the second oldest lighthouse in Florida.

The refuge is a 'gateway site' for the Great Florida Birding Trail.

Access

Public accesses to the refuge are located at:

  • Panacea Unit
Otter Lake, in Panacea
Bottoms Road, in Panacea
Skipper Bay Road, south of Medart (may be closed)
  • Wakulla Unit
Purify Bay Road, in Medart
Shell Point Highway, north of Shell Point
Wakulla Beach Road, east of Shell Point
  • St. Marks Unit
Lighthouse Road, the main entrance, in Newport
Mandalay Bay Road, just east of the Aucilla River in Taylor County.

There is no paved public access to the refuge in Jefferson County.

External links

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