Dry Tortugas National Park

Birding Hot Spot

Description:
The park features seven coral reefs, the Dry Tortugas, and is located about 70 miles west of Key West in the Gulf of Mexico. Snorkel throughout the park or explore on foot 16-acre Garden Key, which features the ruins of Fort Jefferson. The park is accessible only by boat or seaplane.

Watchable Wildlife:
The park has earned worldwide fame as a birding destination. Spring and fall migrations are the best times to visit and check for many species of warblers, vireos and other songbirds. Birders also watch for less common West Indian species that may include the ruddy quail dove, variegated flycatcher, loggerhead kingbird, Bahama swallow, Bahama mockingbird, thick-billed vireo, and yellow-faced grassquit. Check the less-accessible keys by boat for nesting magnificent frigatebird, masked booby, sooty tern and brown noddy. Snorkeling is popular year-round.

Ownership:
National Park Service

Contact:
(305) 242-7700

Directions:
Call the Key West Chamber of Commerce for up-to-date information on transportation options to and from the island; (305) 294-2587 or (800) 648-6269.

Related Sites:
Other Southeast Florida Wildlife Sites
Florida State Parks



FWC Facts:
Cranes are quite omnivorous. They feed on seeds, grain, berries, insects, earthworms, mice, small birds, snakes, lizards, frogs and crayfish, but they do not "fish" like herons.

Learn More at AskFWC