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Friends of St. Marks
Wildlife Refuge
PO Box 368
St. Marks, FL 32355

Phone: (850) 925-6121

Email for more information

Friends of St. Marks Wildlife Refuge

The St. Marks Refuge Association (which was formed in 1987) supports the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge in all aspects of its mission. In 2014, the association registered to 'do business as' Friends of St. Marks Wildlife Refuge. The Friends' group is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation.

The Refuge comprises over 70,000 acres of wildlife habitat along 45 miles of Florida gulf coastline. To get to the Refuge, turn south on Lighthouse Road off of U.S. Hwy 98. If you are visiting the capitol city, the Refuge is approximately 35 miles south of Tallahassee.

Visit this site often to learn about announcements, upcoming events, news, membership, educational efforts, volunteering, support and more. (Note: if you have come to the "Friends" site when you intended to visit the "Refuge" web site, you can go there now.)

watercolor landscape painting

Landscape Watercolor Class
If you have an interest in watercolor painting, consider attending the upcoming November 13, 1-3 pm, introductory class on landscape painting. There is no charge for the class, but the class size is limited to 10 participants. Call the Refuge at 850-925-6121 to register and have class information sent to you via email.

shorebird photo Birds to Look For at the Refuge - October 25 Survey
Don Morrow, St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge volunteer and expert birder, conducted a recent survey. In his notes, he said,
"In six hours during a shorebird survey I logged 72 species of birds. Shorebird numbers have increased markedly and I had six duck species (Wood, both Teal, Shoveler, Pintail & Redhead).  Also of note were Indigo and Painted Bunting and Le Conte’s Sparrow. Here are some highlights of my day! "
illustration of vermillion flycatcher Noteable Bird Sighting
Several birders and photographers have seen the return, this year, of Vermillion Flycatchers at Double Dikes and other locations in the Refuge.

woman using walking stick

Nature Store
Visit the Friends' Nature Store, and you will see why the store is one of our great success stories. In addition to T-shirts, gift cards, jewelry, and burnished water bottles, we are now featuring walking sticks by Whistle Creek (left). Visit the Nature Store, and get more information about these useful hiking accompaniments. (All profits benefit various Refuge programs!)

Special Notes:

  • Construction is taking place at the lighthouse over the next several months. Until further notice, it will not be open on the usual "First Saturday" of each month.
  • Also, drones are not permitted to be launched on national wildlife refuges.  Please inform law enforcement if you see drones being used on your visit here. Thank you for your help.
Upcoming Events


Oct. 29
“St. Marks Shutterbugs Workshop” – smartphone photography, FREE, 10 am – 1 pm, call 850-925-6121 for reservation.  Some prep work needed before workshop.

Oct. 29
Halloween Ghost town trip to Port Leon, 10 am. Bring your mountain bikes and ride 3 miles each way to the gate, then walk ½ mile in to old town of Port Leon on the St. Marks River. See the remnants of the town, railbed and early refuge headquarters. Return trip can be longer if you wish, following the Florida Trail to Lighthouse Rd. Bring bikes in good repair, water, bug spray, binoculars, snacks, and wear long pants and closed toed shoes. Helmets required to participate.  Leader, Volunteer Carol Watkins Babcock. Please reserve your space by calling 850-925-6121.

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Copyright: St. Marks Refuge Association, 2013

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