Everglades and Francis S. Taylor Wildlife Management Area

photo Everglades marsh
Randy Kautz

"In our very midst, we have a tract of land one hundred and thirty miles long and seventy miles wide that is as much unknown to the white man as the heart of Africa."
Hugh L. Willoughby, Across the Everglades 1900

The Everglades and Francis S. Taylor Wildlife Management Area is part of what remains of the largest freshwater marsh ecosystem in the United States. Once water covered-for at least part of each year-this ecosystem encompasses nearly all of south Florida from the custard apple and cypress swamps bordering Lake Okeechobee through flat expanses of gray-green sawgrass veined with sloughs and tree islands to the mangrove forests along Florida Bay.

Today the 671,831-acre Everglades and Francis S. Taylor Wildlife Management Area is the northern and central core of the Everglades, buffering Everglades National Park and Big Cypress National Preserve from extensive agricultural fields to the north and residential development to the east. Although airboats and tracked vehicles are necessary to reach the interior, the extensive network of levees and canals constructed for flood control and water supply afford ample opportunities for fishing, frogging, hiking, biking, and wildlife viewing.


  • View the Conceptual Management Plan PDF for the Everglades Complex of Wildlife Management Areas (Everglades/Francis Taylor WMA, Holey Land WMA and Rotenberger WMA).

FWC Facts:
American kestrels nest in cavities that they do not excavate. Instead, they depend on woodpeckers and natural processes to create holes in trees.

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