Endangered Animals of Florida Series: Wood Stork LbNA # 51230
|Placed Date||Oct 29 2009|
|Location||Merritt Island, FL|
ENDANGERED ANIMALS OF FLORIDA SERIES: WOOD STORK Letterbox
Created by: Moo Poo
Placed by: Moo Poo
***Note: I have been told that there is now an ant mound where I have placed the box! I suggest you a stick to push the bag away from the ant mound. I will attempt to go there in the near future and relocate the box to an ant-free hideout as soon as possible. In the meantime, please be careful as I don't want anyone to get bitten.***
Wood Stork (Mycteria americana)
A large, white, bald-headed wading bird of the southeastern swamps, the Wood Stork is the only stork breeding in the United States. These waders feed on minnows in shallow water by using their bills to perform a rare and effective fishing technique. The stork opens its bill and sticks it into the water, then waits for the touch of an unfortunate fish that wanders too close. When it feels a fish, the stork can snap its bill shut in as little as 25 milliseconds—an incredibly quick reaction time matched by few other vertebrates. The storks prefer to employ this technique in isolated pools created by tides or falling freshwater levels, where fish congregate en masse. In some areas, such as Florida, breeding begins with the dry season that produces these optimal fishing conditions.
Since they have no muscles attached to their voice box, they are very quiet birds. Every now and then they will croak like a bullfrog, or hiss like a snake.
For a while, hunters killed them for their feathers. The main reason there are not many wood storks left today is because massive population growth is destroying their habitat: wetlands. The wood stork is an indicator of the health of our wetlands. If the wood stork is endangered, then so are our wetlands.
It is currently (2009) being considered for removal from the Endangered Species List, but not in a manner that considers the actual health of the populations in Florida.
N Courtenay Parkway & E Hall Road, Merritt Island, FL 32953
Take Hwy 528 east to Merritt Island. Turn left (north) on State Road 3 (N Courtenay Parkway) towards the Kennedy Space Center. You’ll drive over a draw-bridge (keep an eye out for the light…you don’t want to run the red light!)
At Hall Rd, take a right (at this light, there is a Circle K on your left). You will see a sign for The Savannah Golf Club.
After turning onto Hall Rd, you will drive 0.6 miles. At 0.6 miles, there is a black-top pull out on your right. Pull in here.
1) Face the white/gray metal road block/gate (the road you came on will be behind you). This block/ gate is just before a grassy (sometimes overgrown) road. It’ll be right there, where you park, so don’t go down the grassy road!
2) While facing the white/gray road block/ gate, head to the right end of this road block/gate.
3) Notice the gate’s support post? It has 3 sides, making a bracket shape “ [ ” with the open side facing you. Nestled within the support post, at the base, on the side facing you, under a clump of dried grass, is a black duct-taped Ziploc.
4) Please be sure to seal all bags completely. Be sure to put the baggie for the logbook and the baggie for the stamp in a 2nd bag, and then place back into the duct-taped bag.
5) Please hide better than how you found it.
6) Please log your find in to either AtlasQuest.com or Letterboxing.org