• The Florida panther's steely gaze - NPS/RALPH ARWOOD

    Big Cypress

    National Preserve Florida

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • 2014 Zone 4 Closure

    Beginning at 12:01 am Monday, April 7, 2013, the Zone 4 airboat access within Big Cypress National Preserve will be closed due to low water conditions. More »

  • Turner River Closure

    Turner River is closed due to low water conditions. It is advised that visitors consider paddling Halfway Creek as an alternative. More »

  • Campground Closure

    Beginning January 27, through August 28, Burns Lake Campground will be closed to camping. It will still be accessible for day use and backcountry access, however. More »

  • Interstate 75 Mile Marker 63 Closure

    Beginning summer of 2013, the rest area and backcountry access at Mile Marker 63 will be closed due to construction. More »

Commercial Services Operator Training

Once a commercial operator receives a permit to operate at Big Cypress National Preserve, the owner and guides will be required to attend training provided by Big Cypress staff and others.

Training for operators consists of:

  • Two full days of training on-site at Big Cypress National Preserve - 1.25 days inside and .75 day field trip. Field trips will be specific to permitted activity
  • Operators will also be required to participate in three additional documented training opportunities throughout the year, to be selected from a list provided by the National Park Service to the operator.

Examples: Rookery Bay Ecotour operator workshops, Florida Master Naturalist Program, Big Cypress seasonal employee interpretation training, Big Cypress National Preserve invitational "Lunch and Learn" sessions, Preserve scheduled interpretive programs, Online opportunities, such as those provided on www.eppley.org

Other training opportunities not on the list can be submitted to Big Cypress for approval, but must be approved in advance, in order to be accepted to meet requirements for training. Our intention is to provide as many opportunities to get National Park Service approved training as possible, and providing it to as many commercial operator staff as possible.

The training is mandatory for the owners and managers of commercial operations, and since the operator will be required to provide training to meet NPS standards, we will try to "catch" the guides as they arrive for the season.

Did You Know?

Researchers gather data from a bear that was removed as a nuisance.

Do not feed wildlife within the preserve. A "fed bear is a dead bear." This bear was fed and eventually became a threat to visitor safety. Nuisance wildlife is sometimes removed, but typically does not survive.