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Saturday, April 5, 2014

Spring Garden Creek - De Leon Springs

Coot...coot...(instead of beep beep)

Today visited De Leon Springs State Park and kayaked at Spring Garden Creek, all the way to Lake Woodruff, and then back to the State Park. The opening may not be the best pic of the trip but I love it is the opening.

De Leon Springs outflow into De Leon Springs Run

Put In / Take Out: De Leon Springs State Park in De Leon Springs. The link will take you to a site with all the information you need, including location and fees. This is a very nice facility for kayaking with a sandy area to deal with your kayak besides the boat ramp.


This time here made it all the way to Lake Woodruff. Started my day around 8:45 under a beautiful sunny sky that did not stay like that much longer. About 10 minutes into the paddle the Sun was gone and a gray sky was dominating. What the heck happened? Explored the short run area and then crossed Spring Garden lagoon on my way to the Spring Garden Creek, which empties at Lake Woodruff approximately 3 miles after. The creek is wide and there is usually heavy motor boat traffic. When you are heading down creek Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge is to your left side. The trip down the creek to Lake Woodruff took me about three hours but never use my times as a reference. I stop way too many times to take pics. Here are the pics of what I saw on my way to Lake Woodruff.

Great Blue Heron

Black Crowned Night Heron ( One of two in the same general area)

Snowy Egret (lots of them in the lagoon)

Black Crowned Night Heron

Pied Billed Grebe

Snowy Egret


Purple Gallinule...I would call it Purple Moorhen


Purple Moorhen

Tri-Colored Heron

Bald Eagle (max crop...too far for a decent pic so my apologies)

Gator and Snowy Egret (do not worry about the egret...they were not that close)

Juvie Little Blue Heron


Belted Kingfisher


Osprey (female)


Osprey has lunch

Anhinga (female)

Green Heron



Belted Kingfisher (female)

Belted Kingfisher

Green Heron


After arriving at Lake Woodruff took a break and just went with the flow. Heard a classic call of a Bald Eagle and looked for it since it was coming close to where I was. Did not see it but suddenly a juvenile Bald Eagle took off in front of me. That was the problem. I was looking for a white head and this juvie was well camouflaged; no white head yet. Started to paddle my way up the creek, stopped in an area to stretch my legs, and made it back to the State Park in two hours. Motor boat traffic picked up and there were several of them in the creek, no air boats. Here are the few pics I got on this leg of the trip...

Nesting Osprey

Another Osprey at lunch break

Sunning Gator



Gator...pretty good sized as had to paddle almost to the other side to get him in the frame


Real Wildlife Drama. Red Shouldered Hawk packed a Moorhen for dinner

And this is it for this one. Remember to take a look at our Facebook page for more pics from this and past trips. Thanks for coming and hope you come back next week, when we will be sharing more Views From Our Kayak.

Lake Woodruff Gator


  1. I need to get back to De Leon Springs and Lake Woodruff. Its been awhile. Or, I could just look at your photos. How do you know the egret is female? Other than being bossy around the nest.

    1. Am lost here Master Dave. Which egret? The only ones I id as females were the Osprey (chest marks), the Belted Kingfisher strip in the chest too), and the Anhinga. Was tempted to id the Bald Eagle as a female since the beak is so big and deep into the face but do not have a reference.

  2. I'm the lost one. Meant osprey. You answered my question, Learned Luis.