Leffis Key Preserve

Reading this week:

  • the joy and terror are both in the swallowing by Christine Shan Shan Hou

Look, by the time you read this I am going to be like a solid half week into a brand new career and I gotta build up a backlog of entries so I can do all the new-career things like figuring out where to get coffee and where the bathrooms are and also like, how to do the job. So that’ll be exciting! And also with that said, while on our Florida vacation my super amazing girlfriend and I visited the Leffis Key Preserve.

I have been going to the Leffis Key Preserve for years when I visited my grandma and it is one of my favorites. It’s just this tiny little park that was built as a sorta artificial ecology center, that is they built up some islands (or I guess actually dug out some canals) and made a small hill and planted a bunch of mangroves and stuff and just watched as the ecosystem rolled in. Despite it being across from a usually rather crowded public beach, it typically has around zero people in it, so you can have the various trails and boardwalks all to your lonesome.

The biggest draw for me personally is the mangroves. I’m a big fan of mangroves. I’m not a fan of Crossing the Mangrove, which I had to read for a French class with an absolutely atrocious teacher, though maybe if I re-read it I would enjoy it a lot more, but the trees themselves I like both for being extremely friendly for the environment or whatever and also being cool and stuff what with all the fiddler crabs and stuff you get running around their roots. When in the preserve I mostly like just hanging out on the boardwalks they got going through the mangrove uh, groves and taking in feeling of it all.

While my super amazing girlfriend and I were visiting the preserve we also got to see a lot of wildlife. She spotted a little crab in a tree, which is I think typically not where crabs go but just goes to show the beauty and wonder of nature. There were also just a whole butt-ton of fiddler crabs, though I wondered why they all went for the fiddle instead of some branching out to electric guitar or the drums or something. Based on the two pictures above we also got to see some birds. I think (based on a sign we saw) that the top one is a Black-crowned Night Heron (though looking at that webpage maybe not?) while the bottom one is an ibis. We actually see a lot of ibises around here, eating I guess worms or something out of people’s lawns, but this one was special for eating in something that I assume is closer to its natural habitat.

So anyways if you’re in the area you should go to the Leffis Key Preserve. It’s a beautiful little spot and I wish there were more spots like that, except maybe bigger and taking up the entire coastline so we could restore mangrove ecosystems and also prevent seaside erosion. Carbon capture too? Things to think about. The boardwalks are well-maintained and get you real close to nature and stuff, as well as provide gorgeous views of the channel between the islands and the mainland. Plus you can see fish. What’s not to love?