Estero Bay Preserve State Park

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Estero Bay Preserve State Park
IUCN category IV (habitat/species management area)
Map showing the location of Estero Bay Preserve State Park
Map showing the location of Estero Bay Preserve State Park
LocationLee County, Florida, USA
Nearest cityEstero, Florida
Coordinates26°23′49″N 81°51′34″W / 26.39694°N 81.85944°W / 26.39694; -81.85944Coordinates: 26°23′49″N 81°51′34″W / 26.39694°N 81.85944°W / 26.39694; -81.85944
Area10,000 acres (40 km2)
Governing bodyFlorida Department of Environmental Protection

Estero Bay Preserve State Park, the first aquatic nature preserve established in Florida, is a 10,000-acre (40 km2) Florida State Park located near Estero, between Fort Myers and Naples. It consists of the water, inlets, and islands along 10 miles (16 km) of Estero Bay. Activities include fishing, and boating, bicycling, canoeing, and wildlife viewing. Among the wildlife of the park are gopher tortoises, fiddler crabs, and bald eagles. The park is open from 8:00 A.M. until sundown year-round.

The old rail bed of the Seaboard Air Line Railway can be found near the Florida Power and Light easement headed northwest. This section has now been orphaned as developments to the north and south have isolated this section. The Seaboard Air Line Railway was once one of two railroads that served southwest Florida and serves as a point of interest in the park on a hike.

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