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

    Big Cypress

    National Preserve Florida

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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 »

South Florida National Parks Unveil Trilingual Junior Ranger Program

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Date: March 14, 2007
Contact: Bob DeGross, 239-695-1107

Everglades and Biscayne National Parks and Big Cypress National Preserve are pleased to announce the release of a trilingual Junior Ranger program for young visitors. Previously offered only in English, the program is now available in both Spanish and Haitian Creole, and encourages children to explore, learn about, and protect our national treasures, while working to earn the title of "Junior Ranger." Successful participants will earn a souvenir badge at each park they visit. Those who earn a badge at all three parks are eligible to receive a newly designed Junior Ranger patch in the shape of a water drop.

The in-park program centers around the colorful Junior Ranger activity book, available free of charge from all park visitor centers. While exploring the parks, participants complete a series of activities that focus on a variety of topics, including wildlife, habitats, food chains, and wildfire. Once finished, participants return to the park’s visitor center to meet with park staff and participate in a ceremony where they receive their badge and become a Junior Ranger.

The parks’ Junior Ranger Program was produced in three languages to encourage participation by families from the local community. Developed following national standards adopted by the National Park Service, the program hopes to offer young visitors a quality experience in south Florida’s National Parks.

Funding for the Junior Ranger program was made possible in part by a grant from the National Park Foundation through the generous support of Unilever, a Proud Partner of America’s National Parks and a National Corporate Partner of the Junior Ranger Program. Matching funds for the project were raised by the South Florida National Parks Trust and the Friends of Big Cypress. Currently, Junior Ranger programs are available in over 300 parks nationwide and are made possible through private funding from the National Park Foundation and local partners.

Did You Know?

A young alligator emerges from its egg.

Alligator hatching season is typically September through October in south Florida. A female can lay up to 50 eggs, about 45 of which will hatch, but only two or three will make it beyond the first two years of life.