Airboat Tours

Jeri and Pete, S 1505, recently took visiting grandkids on an airboat tour of marshlands  west of I-95 in Indian River County, and absolutely loved the adventure.  It was not physically difficult, The boat was quite new and the Captain was extremely knowledgeable, very considerate of and attentive to his passengers, and highly alert to everyone's safety during the tour.

Captain Bob of Capt. Bob's Airboat Adventure Tours conducted the tour.  There are a number of tour operators.  We can't speak for other tour operators, but we can enthusiastically recommend Captain Bob's tour.  The tour covers much of the 2600 acre old Garcia Ranch property west of Vero Beach and just north of FL-60, which was flooded a couple of decades ago to create an agricultural irrigation water source and provide natural wetlands.

The wildlife we were able to see was simply astounding.  Birds including a bald eagle, osprey, glossy ibis, comorants, coots, egrets, herons, and many others we've already forgotten.  There was beautiful marsh vegetation and  .  .  .  not to foreget  .  .  gators of all sizes.  Captain Bob knew each species in great detail and he continuously explained to us what we were seeing.  It felt like taking a drink from a firehose.

Sometimes we flew through the marches and lilypads at speeds that must have been approaching 50 mph.  At other times, Captain Bob would coast and shut the motor down to drift into a specific location.  The experience was indeed one continuous hour-long stream of encounters with the broadest array of wildlife encounters you can imagine.

The tour costs $45 per person and last one hour.  Well worth the money.  It is very easy on the physique because you are taken, sitting in the boat, right up to each of these habitats.  As far as we were concerned, this was an experience that no one should miss.  We can not recommend it highly enough.  Below are 18 of the 270 pictures we took on our tour.  Enjoy!

The airboat

Not sure . . . an egret or crane?

Cormorant

Mmmm . . . boatload . . looks tasty

Great Blue Heron

Mama osprey on nest

A flock scattering our of our way

Two medium-sized gators

Osprey dining out

Osprey

Great Blue Heron

Large gator easing into the water

Cormorant convention

Mama osprey on her nest

The head is all you see - in the water

Osprey

Some of the marsh vegetation

We had to slow down for traffic

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