What We Are:
The Oxbow Eco-Center is a 225-acre preserve on the North Fork of the St Lucie River. We function as the Environmental Education and Community Outreach Division of St. Lucie County’s Environmental Resources Department. In a partnership between St. Lucie County & South Florida Water Management District, the property was purchased using Environmentally Significant Lands and Save Our Rivers funding. The land is managed and preserved to sustain its native wildlife, utilizing boardwalks, pedestrian trails and observation towers that allow visitors to fully experience nature without disturbing it.
Our trails are open daily from sunrise to sunset. The Oxbow Eco-Center is open Tuesdays-Fridays, 12pm-5pm, and Saturdays 10am-5pm. Dogs are welcome, but must remain on leash on our trails. Please pick up after your pets. Bikes are not permitted on our trails, but check out our other county preserves as others do allow bikes!
The Eco-Center houses our Exhibit Hall and Discovery Room, which invite you to use all your senses. Touch various artifacts of nature, listen to bird songs and see some of Florida’s native reptiles! Our centerpiece exhibit, a life-size diorama of the St Lucie River, takes you on a journey from its lush freshwater beginnings to the rich biodiversity of the Indian River Lagoon and Atlantic Ocean. Look closely to spot some of your favorite Florida natives…they may be hiding!
Our Discovery Room houses our Animal Ambassadors and various ways to touch, play and explore! Check our monthly calendar for a complete schedule of programs and special events!
Building Green & Being Green
The Oxbow also teaches by example! The Center was constructed using 'green building technologies,' and is a model for sustainability. Passive light design, solar panels, recycled and recyclable materials were used in the Center's construction. In addition, a cistern system captures rainfall to flush the toilets, and the floors are made from salvaged pine trees from the St. Johns River in the early logging days. The building is proof that each of us can lighten our load on the planet and protect our precious natural resources for future generations to come.