Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Blue Springs

I used the Sunday after my reunion to do some exploring. If I left early, I could loop south on the way home and hit a handfull of parks that I had not seen in a long time.
One of these was Blue Springs State Park, near Deland.

 It was a weekend day in the summer so the place was jam-packed and crazy ... well, crazy with people having a good time enjoying the spring and playing in the water.
I had to hang around for a gap in the foot traffic to catch the shot above with an empty trail.
I wasn't prepared to get in the water on this day, so I did my shooting from above the surface.
Florida has at least 4 "Blue Springs" that I can think of. It's a logical name for these beautiful aquifer access points.
At Blue Springs State Park, the park service seems to be doing a good job of managing large crowds while protecting the banks and vegetation.

It's harder to protect water quality in a spring as it can be affected by land use miles away from the actual spring site.

I have only been to this spring once or twice in my life, so I don't have the, "You should have seen that water 20 years ago" blues like I get when I go to Crystal River or Manatee Springs.

Ignorance is bliss in this case.

The spring had an impressive gar population.
Most passerby announced that these were "Alligator Gar", but they are a panhandle species mainly and not common on the peninsula.
It's kind of a rippley picture, but it looks like a "Longnose" to me.
This guy looks like an exotic PACU to me ... perhaps a red pacu.
Pacu  are vegetarian pirannah shaped fish that are usually seen as tropical aquarium fish. They are a high value food fish in the Amazon basin and are being aquacultured in some areas.
I only saw this one.
Contrast that fact with the dozens of exotic blue tilapia using the spring and it makes me think that perhaps it is a single aquarium escapee.

Still, I only fish watched for a half hour, so my perception may not be reality.

That is often the case.


Carol said...

One of my favorite places...we usually stop there when on the river.

lisa said...

Thanks for taking us along, I loved it!

Anonymous said...

Hi FC,

I've never been to that Blue Springs. Very pretty.

How is Emma doing at her school?


threecollie said...

Wow, beautiful and what fantastically large fish.

Aunty Belle said...

goodness! It's not too far from me, but I ain't been in 20 years--youse inspired me.

Readin' one post back, I'se charmed at how ya take care of yore mama--

How's the new school? Still happy ya hopped up thar? An Emma? she be settled in yore ole digs?

Thanky fer the kind reamkes 'bout Granny. I'se tellin' it true, losin' yore Mama ain't for sissies.

Kaybe said...

I know what you mean about the "you should've seen it when's". I used to frequent the Weeki Wachee & Homosassa rivers back in the 70's. They are nothing like back in the day although still nice. The Rainbow Run in Dunnellon seems to have weathered the years ok but as a kid those rivers were magical.

Floridacracker said...

I bet! What a great place to cruise to.

Glad you liked it!

Three Collie,
It is a really fishy place. Nice to be able to see them doing their thing.

Emma is working hard and doing great!

It was a beautiful haiku.
Emma's loving it and doing well at my old stomping grounds.
She had the teacher look at a young age.
I am loving teaching on the island.
Busy and all, but just such a fresh change.
I definitely moved my cheese.

How true.

Anonymous said...

Yep, As soon as I saw it I recognized it. It's a Pacu. And Pacus have taken over as the top fish of New Guinea and have wiped out the native fish species. Pacus are now attacking people and especially the genitals of men. This can be read on the website of "River Monsters" with Jeremy Wade. The episode is "Mutilator".
Normally Pacus are vegetarians and especially fond of (pardon the pun) nuts. They use their powerful jaws to crack open fruit nuts.

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