Wildlife Resources:
    Birds of Polk County Florida
    Snakes of Florida

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Wildlife On Energy Crop Tree Farm


Prior to the development of our environmentally damaged phosphate mining site (when it was totally dominated by ~6 feet of cogongrass), birds were rarely seen. Perhaps one of the most gratifying accomplishments is seeing how significant levels of bird populations are returning to site.

While we are very much in a learning phase of fully understanding the "whys" of increased wildlife populations-- certain aspects are clear. For example, with tree canopies shading the forest floor, cogongrass is being effectively controlled. This is allowing native Florida plants such as creeping dayflower (a favorite food source, especially to Ground Doves) to return to the site. We also are observing tremendous numbers of tree frogs in eucalyptus stands.

Birds

  • Osprey -- Spring, Summer, Fall Resident.
  • Red Tail Hawk - [pictures]
  • Red Shouldered Hawk
  • Common Ground Dove
  • Redwing Blackbird
  • Turkey and Black Vultures
  • Northern Mockingbird -- only along perimeter of farm.
  • Sandpiper -- Winter Resident.
  • Ibis
  • Sandhill Crane
  • Baltimore Oriole -- Winter Resident.
  • Egret
  • Northern Cardinal -- increasing populations.
  • Yellow-Throated and Palm Warbler -- Winter Resident.
  • Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
  • Eastern Phoebe
  • American Robin -- Winter Resident.
  • Common Grackle
  • Wood Stork -- found in wet areas.
  • Carolina Wren
  • Swallow-tail Kite -- Beautiful!, 1st siting on Farm May 2003.
  • Butterflys:

  • Monarch or Viceroy -- (We are not sure)
  • Zebra Longwing -- State Butterfly of Florida
  • Snakes:

  • Black Racer -- most common snake on farm.
  • Red Rat/Corn Snake -- Very docile and pretty snake.
  • King Snake
  • Indigo Snake -- Wow, around 7 to 8' in length!
  • Cottonmouth -- Common and very agressive snake.
  • Rattlesnake -- Not common, but are on tree farm.

    Large Critters:

  • Bobcats
  • Wild Hogs
  • Alligators
  • Florida Panther -- One siting in February, early morning.