This is the seventh installment of 12 Things to Experience on an Everglades Airboat Tour which can also be downloaded as a free eBook.
Most people don’t think about raccoons when they picture the marshes of the Everglades. However, it is actually very common to see raccoon families on your airboat tour. Typically, raccoons are nocturnal creatures, meaning they are active at night. However, in the Everglades, it is the tide that greatly influences their schedule. So, it is not unusual to see them active in the middle of the day!
The raccoons also tend to be a bit smaller than the raccoons found in the North. This is possibly due in part to our warmer climate. You may also see a….
Although it is highly unlikely that you would see a Florida panther on your airboat tour through the Western areas of the Everglades, these majestic cats do make their home in the Pineland habitat further east. Currently, there are 20,000 acres of pineland protected within Everglades National Park park. Pineland ecosystems are characterized by shallow, dry sandy loam over limestone, covered almost exclusively by slash pines.
Florida panthers have a tawny, pale brown color, with white stomachs. Panthers’ noses, tail tips, and places behind their ears are all dark brown or black. These large cats are long and slender, with shorter legs and ears. Panthers’ paws have strong, thick pads. An average sized male panther would be about seven feet long, from its nose to its tail. Most male panthers weigh about 120 to 170 pounds, while females weigh about 80 to 120 pounds.
Sadly, the Florida panther is now an endangered species, and is the last population of its species east of the Mississippi River. Today, there are less than 100 Florida panthers left in the wild, and they are protected by state and federal laws.
Would you like to see Everglades wildlife up close? Then come see us at Captain Doug’s Everglades Tours located in Everglades City. Our airboat tours depart continuously – about every 30 minutes and every day of the year including Thanksgiving and Christmas. Bring your $10 off coupon and start your adventure today! If you have further questions about us or if you are ready to book your trip contact us online, call us toll free at 1-800-282-9194, or follow Captain Doug’s on Twitter.
- Captain Doug