A field trip to GTM Research Reserves, Guana Tolomato Matanzas national Estuarine Research Reserve, Guana River State Park, or GTM, …whatever…. 8-O is always an educational one, even if you are there just for a visit and not a class trip.
The co-op’s students, parents, and I went hiking down the yellow trail on this GTM Reserach Reserve Trail Map. One mile in and one mile out. Easy-peasy.
Before we even got on the trail the students found their first specimen to record.
A Squirrel Treefrog. Can you see where it was found? Thankfully everyone brought bottled water, because no one wanted to drink out of this faucet.
Along the trail to the river we found:
White-topped Sedge, a Florida native plant. Thanks to my MIL for identifying them for me!
Alligators sunning along the water’s edge. I don’t blame them. It was a beautiful day!
Other things found along the trail, but no photos taken: birds nests, spiders, snakes, bugs, bugs, and bugs. Thistles and lots of different trees.
Once at the river, we found:
Cannonball Jellyfish. Gives a slight sting and is edible, but you have to prepare it properly. Lunch anyone?
Lots of dead trees. These are near the water’s edge and have long since died. I really do like the looks of old tangled tree roots. To me, it is art. :D
This time around we found only one Horseshoe Crab and this one was the largest I have seen. The tail measure roughly 11 inches and the body was 14 inches. It’s dead. Just so you know.
Muck. I have no idea what this aquatic grass is called.
Back to the trail head, my daughter took this shot of a caterpillar. I have no idea what it will turn into, moth or butterfly.
So there is just a sample of what we saw. What have you seen lately?