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Updated: 03/24/2017 08:30:06AM

Florida scrub-jay walking tour

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Brash, boisterous, and blue. Meet the federally-threatened Florida Scrub-Jay on Saturday.

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VENUS — Find out more about the iconic Florida scrub-jay, the only species of bird found only in Florida!

Archbold Biological Station has a Florida scrub-jay walking tour planned for Saturday beginning at 8 a.m. along the Station nature trails. The Florida scrub-jay is bold and curious and visitors may see these behaviors, as well as courtship behaviors first-hand. The scrub jays have been studied for more than four decades at Archbold making it one of the longest running population studies of a bird in the U.S. This long-term study has revealed much about the scrub jays living in Highlands County and elsewhere in Florida.

Join Dr. Reed Bowman, Director of the Avian Ecology Program at Archbold, on a public nature walk to learn more about the scrub jays. Dr. Bowman has studied Florida scrub jays for over 26 years.

“It is the beginning of nesting season and established pairs are already nesting and new pairs are forming. It is an exciting time for scrub jays and a great time to come observe them,” explained Bowman. “This is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about a true Florida native. Florida scrub jays are a cooperative, social bird, living in extended family groups. Hopefully while watching the jays, I will elaborate on the lives of these birds, how they survive in the harsh scrub, and how their lives parallel our own. I am looking forward to sharing some stories about the jays this Saturday.”

The tour be walking along sandy trails, so please come prepared with walking shoes (not sandals), sunblock, hats and water.

Archbold Biological Station is eight miles south of Lake Placid. The entrance is 1.8 miles south of SR 70 on Old SR 8. Visit their website at

During business hours call 863-465-2571. The Welcome Office in the Learning Center is staffed from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays through April.

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