Guided Nature Programs

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jones hammock hike2 

St. Lucie County’ Environmental Resources Department is proud to offer educational programming on its publicly owned lands. These programs are FREE, unless otherwise specified and open to the public.  Programs are usually limited to 20 people to allow participants to immerse themselves into the County’s beautiful wild areas, and reservations are required. Programs target ages 12 and older, unless otherwise noted.  All minors must be accompanied by an adult.  We hope you’ll join us!

Guided Nature Programs are offered week days, weekends and some evenings, it is a fun and safe opportunity to explore the local preserves.  Each program presents a new topic from critters like owls, local history, native plants, tracking and scat ID to how to become an environmental steward and almost everything in-between. 


October 2018 Programs

Click HERE to sign up for October Guided Nature Programs.


Spook-tacular Shapeshifters Night Hike at Spruce Bluff Preserve

Wednesday, October 31st – 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm

Night-time sounds have both fascinated and scared humans over the ages.  Animals rustling in the bushes and calling in the darkness will be our Halloween treat as we watch and listen for nocturnal wildlife activity.  We’ll be listening for a variety of birds, amphibians, insects and mammals as the setting sun reveals the preserve’s tricks and treats!



November 2018 Programs

Click HERE to sign up for November Guided Nature Programs.


Ultra-violet Vision: Colors Through Animal Eyes Night Hike at Ancient Oaks Preserve

Saturday, November 3rd – 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Humans have great eyesight, but other animals can see things we cannot.  Find out more about how light waves are perceived by animal eyes, and learn about the importance of color in nature.  During this night hike, we will be using ultraviolet lights to see a “new side” of plants, insects, and more.


St. Lucie River Kayak Excursion at Richard E. Becker Preserve

Wednesday, November 7th – 9:30 am to 12:00 pm

Escape from hectic daily life and discover one of the wild tributaries of the St. Lucie River.  This guided kayak adventure will take participants along Ten Mile Creek.  Learn to identify numerous birds, trees, and flowers along the way. Kayaks, US Coastguard approved personal flotation devices, and paddles provided (you may also bring your own equipment if desired).  The cost is $10 per person.  No online registration, please call (772) 462-2526 to reserve your space. RSVP a must!


Fire and Rain Hike at Bluefield Ranch Preserve

Saturday, November 10th – 8:00 am to 11:00 am

Fire and rain are both necessary to have a healthy ecosystem, and Bluefield Ranch Preserve has had plenty of both this year.  Explore recently burned and flooded areas as new growth begins.



***Special Event- National Take a Hike Day “1 Day; 4 Preserves to Explore” ***

Saturday, November 17th – 8:30 am to 4:30 pm

Hit the trails on the American Hiking Society’s annual “Take a Hike Day”.  St Lucie County’s Environmental Resources Department in partnership with the Health Department’s Billion Steps Program is proud to host an event that challenges St. Lucie residents and visitors to explore four of the County’s most beautiful preserves.  You can select one, two, three or embrace the full challenge and attend all four hikes.  This event is FREE and appropriate for ages 8 and up. Call (772) 462-2526 


    1) George LeStrange Preserve:   8:30am- 10:00 am


    2) Oxbow Eco-Center Preserve:    10:30 am- 12:00 pm


    3) Citrus Hammock Preserve:     1:30 pm- 2:30 pm


    4) Ancient Oaks Preserve:    3:00pm- 4:30 pm


Fitness Hike at Spruce Bluff Preserve

Sunday, November 18th – 9:00 am to 10:30 am

Enjoy the outdoors and get in shape at the same time by joining us on this moderately paced fitness hike along the north and south trails. Participants should anticipate hiking approximately 2.75 miles.


Talking Turkey Hike at Bluefield Ranch Preserve

Friday, November 23rd – 9:00 am to 11:00 am

What better way to celebrate a thankful spirit than a walk through the woods, enjoying the tranquility of nature and delight in seeing wildlife and flowering plants. This hike will focus on the endemic Florida Turkey!  Learn all about this fascinating bird, and impress your friends and family with your knowledge of this true Florida native while enjoying Thanksgiving this year!


Black Friday Full Moon Hike at Oxbow Eco-Center Preserve

Friday, November 23rd – 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Tired of the Black Friday shopping stress and crowds?  If your answer is a resounding yes, then take the opportunity to spoil yourself and get away from it all on an enchanted moonlit hike through the Oxbow forest. In the beautiful glow of the moon we’ll see what other animals are also relishing a quiet and peaceful night.



Full Moon Night Hike at Steven J. Fousek Preserve

Saturday, November 24th – 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Moonlight, critters, and woods, oh my!  We’re looking for and listening to wildlife at dusk as the daylight transitions to the night.  The “changing of the guard” from daytime to nighttime brings a host of changes to the preserves in terms of which creatures are active and gives us extraordinary moonlit viewing opportunities.


Becoming a Preserve Pal Program & Hike at Walton Scrub Preserve

Sunday, November 25th – 9:00 am to 10:30 am

Get involved in one of St. Lucie County’s newest citizen engagement opportunities!  During this interactive hike, participants will learn about the Environmental Resources Department’s “Preserve Pal Program” and how it invites local residents, neighborhoods, schools and homeowners’ associations (HOAs) to take stewardship of the natural areas that surround them.  This is appropriate for ages 13 & up.


Scrub Specialists Hike at Indrio Scrub Preserve

Friday, November 30th – 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm

Have you ever wondered how some animals could survive in some of the harshest environments? The scrub is much like a desert, and the creatures here have many adaptations for survival. Let us introduce you to a small and mighty preserve full of life on this short afternoon walk.



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