Spirit-of-the-Wild Wildlife Management Area is
located south of the Caloosahatchee River and about 40 miles
northeast of Fort Myers. Its 7,487 acres are a part of a growing
mosaic of conservation lands undergoing long term, state-of-the-art
restoration to benefit the Florida panther, Florida black bear and
other protected species. The waters in marshy Canoe Slough, flow
north through the site to the Caloosahatchee River. The natural
communities at Spirit-of-the-Wild also help buffer the extensive
wetlands on the adjoining 34,722-acre Okaloacoochee Slough, an
important source of water for the Fakahatchee Strand State Preserve
and the Big Cypress National Preserve to the south.
Over a century of flood control, agriculture and
cattle ranching activities have altered water flow and the plant
and animal communities in this region, yet the pine flatwoods,
pastures and wetlands at Spirit-of-the-Wild continue to attract a
variety of wildlife. The area is open year round for wildlife
viewing, hiking, biking, horseback riding and seasonal hunts.
Visitors can travel on a circuit of unpaved roads and catch
glimpses of wading birds, wild turkey, white-tailed deer and feral
View the Conceptual
for Spirit-of-the-Wild Wildlife Management Area.