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March 02,2015 - New Telegraph Creek Preserve entrance opens
news-press.com

Special to The News-Press
February 28, 2015
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Haven’t been to Lee County’s Telegraph Creek Preserve in a while? Well when you do, you’ll notice a change.

The public now has an additional way to access the preserve with the opening of a new public entrance.

This Conservation 2020 preserve’s amenities include equestrian trails, hiking trails, nature study/photography and ample bird watching opportunities. The preserve is located at 16451 North River Road, Alva. It’s immediately east of Bob Janes Preserve and just south of Babcock Ranch Preserve, with hiking trail access points along Telegraph Creek Preserve southern boundary.

Telegraph Creek Preserve has 6.75 miles of equestrian trails that are accessible from the intersection of Argo Road and North River Road through the newly constructed parking area, and 2.95 miles of hiking trails that are accessible from the parking area located at 16451 N River Road. Regular park hours are dawn to dusk daily with free admission and free parking. The preserves Argo Road entrance and equestrian trails will be closed seasonally during the rainy season (May-October) due to the sensitivity of plant communities, soil types, protection of Telegraph Creek water quality and limited emergency vehicle access in the event of an injury. Trail maps may be downloaded from www.conservation2020.org.

Directions and more information are at www.conservation2020.org, or call 239-533-7455. Follow Lee County, FL Conservation 20/20 on Facebook. For information on Lee County Parks & Recreation, visit www.LeeParks.org or 239-533-7275.

A closer look

Telegraph Creek Preserve totals 1,727 acres, making it the fourth largest Conservation 20/20 preserve.

The preserve has a total of 9.7 miles of equestrian and hiking trails which wind through 37 plant communities such as dry prairie, mesic flatwoods, and scrubby flatwoods.

Native plant communities support state and federally protected species including the bald eagle, crested caracara, wood stork, gopher tortoise, and Eastern indigo snake.

More than 100 different bird species have been observed at Telegraph Creek Preserve.

Equestrian trails wind through a portion of Telegraph Creek preserve that has an active cattle lease. Historically Telegraph Creek preserve has supported cattle grazing and a portion of the preserve still does today.

Telegraph Creek Preserve was acquired as two parcels in January 2009. Both parcels were acquired through the Conservation 20/20 program for a total cost of $23.9 million.

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