About the Exhibit: Barking Up a Tree
Even long-time residents have trouble identifying the native trees of south Florida. About 125 species, most of which are unfamiliar because of their Caribbean origins, live within the hammocks, cypress forests, mangrove swamps, pine rocklands, and other habitats. The photographs displayed here provide close-up views of 25 native south Florida trees. Such magnified views can unlock secrets to a tree's identification, lead to discoveries about its unique character… and spark a desire to go out and see the real thing.
These photographs were displayed as a photography exhibit at the Ernest Coe Visitor Center at Everglades National Park and later at the Dante Fascell Visitor Center at Biscayne National Park. The team that created this exhibit, Bob Showler and Tim Taylor, generously provided the descriptions and photographs to the National Park Service to be included on the Everglades National Park website.
While searching for national champion trees (the largest of their species in the United States), naturalist Bob Showler began to notice the special qualities of each tree's bark. He teamed up with photographer Tim Taylor to produce this exhibit. Bob has lived and worked in south Florida's national parks on-and-off since 1979. He never fails to be inspired by the region's amazing natural history.
As a National Park Service volunteer, Tim Taylor became interested in the beauty and photographic possibilities of south Florida's unique vegetation. On trips to different habitats with his friend Bob Showler, they hatched a plan to create a photo project featuring native trees. Tim has visited south Florida frequently for the last 24 years from his home in California. After retiring he has pursued his interests in photography, travel, and working in national parks.
Did You Know?
Soft-shell turtles may not have the protective hard covering seen on other turtles, but they make up for that with relatively greater speeds in the water. Also, their long noses are well adapted for snorkeling. These amazing animals seem perfectly built for a life in the Everglades!