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Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve What's New

"Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve is an extremely productive estuary supporting a diverse array of marine life that enhances Lee County's intricate and unique ecosystem."

Ray Judah, Lee County Commissioner


Southwest Florida, along the Gulf of Mexico in Lee County between Bonita Springs and Ft. Myers Beach


11,000 acres of sovereign submerged lands


Cheryl Clark
Aquatic Preserve Manager
700-1 Fisherman's Wharf
Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931


  • Florida's first Aquatic Preserve, designated in 1966.
  • Shallow estuary fed by five minor freshwater tributaries, but influenced more by tidal action.
  • Contains strong currents near passes with areas of slow waters in between where bird rookeries can be found.
  • Diverse habitats include seagrass beds, mangrove islands, salt marshes, tidal flats and oyster bars.
  • Designated as Outstanding Florida Waters because of exceptional ecological significance.
  • Includes many historic and archaeological sites such as those on Mound Key, some of which are submerged.

Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve Offers Wading Trips  
The Estero Bay Aquatic Preserve invites the public to participate in an upcoming wading trip through the estuary on Thu, Apr 2, 2015 to discover first-hand why estuaries are known as "cradles of the ocean."

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Last updated: March 17, 2015

  3900 Commonwealth Boulevard M.S. 235 Tallahassee, Florida 32399 850-245-2094
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