• Beach walkway to white sandy beach and bluegreen waters

    Gulf Islands

    National Seashore FL,MS

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Partial Closure on Horn Island

    Small portion of Horn Island, Mississippi, closed to entry due to discovery of asbestos and possible other bio hazards. Click on more for map and press release. More »

  • Shorebirds Nesting Near Roads - 20 mph

    Shorebirds are nesting near roads and cross the road regularly. Observe posted speed limits and be alert for tiny birds on the roads. Last year 155 birds were killed on park roads, help us reduce the mortality rate of these beautiful birds and go slow.

Reptiles

 
Gopher tortoise walking through sand and vegetation at Naval Live Oaks, Florida District

Gopher tortoise at Naval Live Oaks, Florida District.

Reptiles mainly live in the tropics and subtropics although they inhabit every continent except Antarctica. Reptiles are referred to as “cold-blooded” because they do not generate enough heat within their bodies to maintain a constant body temperature (one exception is the Leatherback Sea Turtle). They rely on gathering and losing heat from the environment to regulate their internal temperature.

 
Orange, yellow, and brown corn snake curled up and resting on a dock

Corn snake resting on a dock, Mississippi District.

Forty-seven species of reptiles have been identified at Gulf Islands National Seashore, including several state and federally listed species like the gopher tortoise and loggerhead sea turtle.

 
Gulf Coast Salt Marsh Snake curled up in vegetation.

Gulf Coast Salt Marsh snake, Mississippi District.

The highest species richness of reptiles can be found in the Naval Live Oaks area of Gulf Islands National Seashore but different species of snakes, turtles, and lizards are found in every area of the park.
 

Did You Know?

Visitors observe a sand castle on Perdido Key Beach in Florida.

Gulf Islands National Seashore's barrier island habitats, offshore waters, and submerged resources offer a variety of recreational opportunities for people year-round.