Photos courtesy of Michael Rinehart
Size: 66 acres
Habitat: Last remaining stands of basin swamp and pine flatwoods.
Vegetation: Tall Cypress contains a dense, continuous canopy of cypress trees that transitions to slash pines. Interspersed within this canopy are shallow willow and pond apple depressions, sabal palm heads, red maples, and strangler fig trees. The understory of sword and leather ferns, saw palmetto, swamp lily, soft-leaved wild coffee, beautyberry, and other basin swamp plants is so thick that it is extremely difficult to traverse this urban forest by foot.
Wildlife: In terms of animal species, the site is one of the most diverse purchased through the 1989 Environmentally Sensitive Lands (ESL) Bond program. Due to the density of vegetation and the lack of disturbance, the site is ideal habitat for heavily forested woodland species. Mammals, birds, and reptiles are particularly numerous. Tall Cypress also presents an ideal habitat for resident and migratory birds, including the great horned owl, pileated woodpecker, great egret, little blue heron, cardinal, bluejay, and many species of warbler. Among the plentiful reptiles are land turtles, snakes, and lizards. The site is also home to many species of butterflies, including white peacock, malachite, gulf fritillary, and Julia.
Amenities: 2,090-foot elevated boardwalk with two covered overlooks, concrete trail, restrooms, interpretive signage, seating areas, an amphitheater, and parking. Wildlife observation is encouraged, although bicycles, inline skates, skateboards, and motorized vehicles are prohibited on the trails. As with all natural area sites, pets are not allowed.
Nature at Night Hikes (October through May): These naturalist-led hikes awaken and explore your senses to reveal the sites distinctive night life. Offered on Saturday evenings. Sturdy shoes are recommended. For all ages. The fee is $5 per person. Preregistration and prepayment are required at calling Quiet Waters Park at 954-357-5100 or .
Environmental and Scouting Programs: Getting people of all ages involved in the appreciation of nature is the focus of many of the programs at Tall Cypress Natural Area. Opportunities include activities for boy and girl scouts, children's programs, school field trips, private group tours, and more. Call Katherine Hendrickson at 954-357-5113 for more details and to make reservations.
EcoAction Days (October through May): Volunteer workdays help keep our natural areas clear of garbage and invasive plants. They're held on the fourth Saturday of the month from 9 a.m. to noon. Closed-toe shoes are required, and long pants and long sleeves are suggested. Volunteers are encouraged to bring their own gloves, hats, sunscreen, insect repellent, and drinking water. Ages 13 to 17 must have a parent or guardian's signature on the registration form prior to participating. Volunteers under the age of 13 may participate, but only if accompanied by a parent or guardian. High school students can use the hours from these workdays toward their required community service hours. Check the volunteer Web page for the latest workday registration form. Preregister by calling Quiet Waters Park at 954-357-5100.
School Groups: This 66-acre natural area abounds with learning opportunities for students of all ages. From outdoor laboratory experiments to group learning exercises, we can ensure students receive the information they need while having a fun experience.
A Little History: This 66-acre natural area has long been known for its richly forested resources. Owned jointly by Broward County and the City of Coral Springs, the site was once slated for development. It has been preserved through the efforts of local and county government, along with the Coral Springs High School environmental group Save What’s Left.
Aerial image of Tall Cypress Natural Area
The natural area is accessible from Broward County Transit Route #34.
Tall Cypress Natural Area
3700 Turtle Run Blvd., Coral Springs, FL 33067