Wildlife You’ll Encounter In the Lagoon

The Indian River Lagoon is full of living creatures. As a 321 Boat Club Member you have a unique opportunity to discover and admire this wildlife close up and first hand. From birds to sea mammals, no matter what day you’re on the river you’re bound to see some amazing wildlife. Here are a few examples of encounters with wild Florida you may have.

Manatees – Manatees are Florida’s state marine animal; they are gentle herbivores who munch on sea grass all day. These curious, aquatic cousins to elephants, are an endangered species that are a joy to see. They like to sleep, and if you see one while you’re driving be very careful to not hit them.

Bottle Nose Dolphin – Bottle nose dolphins also call the Indian River Lagoon home. You’ll see them in pods of two or three feeding on shrimp or small bait fish. They love to play and jump out of the water. They communicate with one another through clicks and whistles, and will sometimes swim right along side of your boat.

Tarpon- Tarpon are massive fish that begin their life in the Lagoon. They live for more than 50 years and have been swimming in our oceans since the times of the dinosaurs. You may have seen them gulping air at the surface of the water. Tarpon are illegal to fish without a license, and are one of the most famous game fish in Florida.

Pelicans – Brown Pelicans are abundant in the Indian River Lagoon. They eat fish and are seen diving, beak-first into the water to catch their lunch. Pelicans can weigh about 10 pounds, live upwards of 30 years, and eat about four pounds of fish a day.

Sea Turtles—Juvenile Loggerhead and Green Sea Turtles call the Indian River Lagoon a cafeteria. After about 7 years in the ocean juvenile turtles will make their way back to the Lagoon to forage until they reach adulthood. Both of these species are very rare, so if you see one while you’re enjoying your boat membership, consider yourself lucky.

Alligators – It’s not often you’ll see this enormous dangerous reptile swimming in the lagoon, but some do call the brackish waters of the Indian River home. Alligators eat fish, turtles, birds and other reptiles and roughly 1.25 million live in Florida. If you see an alligator in the lagoon, don’t freak out, snap a picture and stay in the boat.

With all the amazing animals residing in the Indian River Lagoon, it’s hard to not have a good time exploring the waters. If you want to take full advantage of everything that Florida has to offer a boat club membership may be the thing for you.