Alligator Creek Location Map

Gate Hours:
Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.
Saturday 9:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m.
Sunday: Gate Closed but Walk thru available from Sunrise to Sunset

Trail Hours:
Sunrise to Sunset Every Day

If the gate is shut or locked during daylight hours, please park in the area to the right of the entrance road. Do not block the gate. Use the walk-through that is also to the right of the road. Some holidays the gate may be closed, but it is public land and is open to you 365 days a year, during daylight hours.

CHEC at Alligator Creek

Cedar Point Visitor's Center
Alligator Creek's Visitor's Center

The Alligator Creek Preserve was established in 1987. It is adjacent to the 30,000+acre Charlotte Harbor State Park Preserve. CHEC is located on property owned by the State of Florida and the Center’s portion is leased to the Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center, Inc. for environmental, educational, and recreational activities. The Alligator Creek Preserve includes four (4) miles of nature trails. Year-round volunteers offer interpretive trail walks to the public free of charge.

Dog are allowed to hike with you but must be leashed at all times, on a leash no longer than 6 feet long. This is to protect both your pet and the wildlife, too. Please bring a plastic bag to pick up after your dog. (Scoop the Poop!).

While here you must comply with the State Park Rules which include No Alcohol or Camping, No bike riding or smoking on trails, and No Collection of any kind. Alligators are protected by State and Federal laws. Please do not approach or disturb alligators or any other wildlife.


Charles E. caniff
Bob Isaksen's Walking Sticks

The Rose Isaksen Gift Shop

This special gift shop,located in the Caniff Visitor's Center, is full of Unique Southwest Florida Gifts and Books! Gift Shop hours are 9am-3pm Monday through Saturday from January through March. April through December the gift shop is open Monday through Friday 9am-3pm. Follow the boardwalk from the parking lot up to the Charles E. Caniff Visitor's Center building. Some of the special items for sale include:

Handmade Bird, Butterfly and Bat Houses
  • A variety of eco-identification, informational books on south Florida wildlife, along with story books for children, fishing guides, and historical and/or cultural books;
  • Local popular Orange Blossom honey;.
  • Special children’s gifts including stuffed animals, puzzles, shark’s teeth, books, t-shirts and other toys;
  • Hand carved walking sticks beautifully crafted, and sturdy are an ideal gift for avid hikers! The wood is from Birch, Pine, Ash, Cherry, Beech, Mangrove, Carrot, and Melaleuca trees from both Florida and New Hampshire. Each walking stick is zip code inscribed with the origin of the tree wood, along with the wood type and Charlotte Harbor name;
  • Handmade bird houses, butterfly houses and bat houses of recycled wood are made with love by volunteers;
  • Hand-made decorative ceramics and small wallets;
  • Florida themed T-shirts of ALL sizes…youth to adult, along with adult caps and visors;
  • And Shark's teeth and other Florida themed jewelry;

Stop by the Rose Isaksen Gift Shop and see all the wonderful things inside, for yourself, or for the perfect gift!  Friends of CHEC members receive a discount in this store!!!


Punta Gorda Canal and Lake Monitoring Program

Punta Gorda Canal Program volunteers monitor 6 canal locations within Punta Gorda Isles and Burnt Store Isles; testing pH, temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen and more. Attached are the most recent analysis results.


Wildlife and plants observed within the park

Birds

Birds listed were seen and heard by Malcolm Simons, master birder, over many years as a CHEC volunteer.

  1. grebes (podicipedidae)
    1. Pied-billed Grebe
      Podilymbus
      podiceps
  2. pelicans (pelecanidae)
    1. American White Pelican
      Pelecanus
      erythrorhynchos
    2. Brown Pelican
      Pelecanus
      occidentalis
  3. cormorants (phalacrocoracidae)
    1. Double-crested Cormorant
      Phalacrocorax
      auritus
  4. anhingas (anhingidae)
    1. Anhinga
      Anhinga
      anhinga
  5. frigatebirds (fregatidae)
    1. Magnificent Frigatebird
      Fregata
      magnificens
  6. herons & egrets (ardeidae)
    1. Great Blue Heron
      Ardea
      herodias
    2. Great Egret
      Ardea
      alba
    3. Snowy Egret
      Egretta
      thula
    4. Little Blue Heron
      Egretta
      caerulea
    5. Tricolored Heron
      Egretta
      tricolor
    6. Reddish Egret
      Egretta
      rufescens
    7. Cattle Egret
      Bubulcus
      ibis
    8. Green Heron
      Butorides
      virescens
    9. Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
      Nyctanassa
      violacea
  7. ibises (threskiornithidae)
    1. White Ibis
      Eudocimus
      albus
    2. Roseate Spoonbill
      Platalea
      ajaja
  8. storks (ciconiidae)
    1. Wood Stork
      Mycteria
      americana
  9. vultures (cathartidae)
    1. Black Vulture
      Coragyps
      atratus
    2. Turkey Vulture
      Cathartes
      aura
  10. ducks, geese & swans (anatidae)
    1. Mottled Duck
      Anas
      fulvigula
    2. Blue-winged Teal
      Anas
      discors
    3. Lesser Scaup
      Aythya
      affinis
    4. Hooded Merganser
      Lophodytes
      cucullatus
  11. hawks, kites & eagles (accipitridae)
    1. Osprey
      Pandion
      haliaetus
    2. Swallow-tailed Kite
      Elanoides
      forficatus
    3. Bald Eagle
      Haliaeetus
      leucocephalus
    4. Sharp-shinned Hawk
      Accipiter
      striatus
    5. Red-shouldered Hawk
      Buteo
      lineatus
    6. Short-tailed Hawk
      Buteo
      brachyurus
    7. Red-tailed Hawk
      Buteo
      jamaicensis
  12. falcons (falconidae)
    1. American Kestrel
      Falco
      sparverius
    2. Peregrine Falcon
      Falco
      peregrinus
  13. turkey & quail (phasianidae)
    1. Northern Bobwhite
      Colinus
      virginianus
  14. rails (rallidae)
    1. Clapper Rail
      Rallus
      longirostris
    2. Sora
      Porzana
      carolina
    3. Common Gallinule (Moorhen)
      Gallinula
      chloropus
  15. cranes (gruidae)
    1. Florida Sandhill Crane
      Grus
      canadensis pratensis
  16. plovers (charadriidae)
    1. Killdeer
      Charadrius
      vociferus
  17. stilts (recurvirostridae)
    1. Black-necked Stilt
      Himantopus
      mexicanus
  18. sandpipers (scolopacidae)
    1. Greater Yellowlegs
      Tringa
      melanoleuca
    2. Spotted Sandpiper
      Actitis
      macularius
    3. Common Snipe
      Gallinago
      gallinago
  19. gulls & terns (laridae)
    1. Laughing Gull
      Leucophaeus
      atricilla
    2. Ring-billed Gull
      Larus
      delawarensis
    3. Sandwich Tern
      Thalasseus
      sandvicensis
  20. doves (columbidae)
    1. Rock Dove
      Columba
      livia
    2. Mourning Dove
      Zenaida
      macroura
    3. Common Ground-Dove
      Columbina
      passerina
  21. cuckoos (cuculidae)
    1. Yellow-billed Cuckoo
      Coccyzus
      americanus
  22. owls (tytonidae)
    1. Barn Owl
      Tyto
      alba
    2. Eastern Screech-Owl
      Megascops
      asio
    3. Great Horned Owl
      Bubo
      virginianus
    4. Barred Owl
      Strix
      varia
  23. nightjars (caprimulgidae)
    1. Chuck-will’s-widow
      Caprimulgus
      carolinensis
  24. hummingbirds (trochilidae)
    1. Ruby-throated Hummingbird
      Archilochus
      colubris
    2. Rufous Hummingbird
      Selasphorus
      rufus
  25. kingfishers (alcedinidae)
    1. Belted Kingfisher
      Megaceryle
      alcyon
  26. woodpeckers (picidae)
    1. Red-bellied Woodpecker
      Melanerpes
      carolinus
    2. Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
      Sphyrapicus
      varius
    3. Downy Woodpecker
      Picoides
      pubescens
    4. Hairy Woodpecker
      Picoides
      villosus
    5. Pileated Woodpecker
      Dryocopus
      pileatus
    6. Northern Flicker
      Colaptes
      auratus
  27. flycatchers (tyrannidae)
    1. Great Crested Flycatcher
      Myiarchus
      crinitus
    2. Eastern Phoebe
      Sayornis
      phoebe
  28. vireos (vireonidae)
    1. Red-eyed Vireo
      Vireo
      olivaceus
    2. White-eyed Vireo
      Vireo
      griseus
  29. crows & jays (corvidae)
    1. Blue Jay
      Cyanocitta
      cristata
    2. Fish Crow
      Corvus
      ossifragus
  30. martins & swallows (hirundinidae)
    1. Tree Swallow
      Tachycineta
      bicolor
    2. Cliff Swallow
      Petrochelidon
      pyrrhonota
    3. Barn Swallow
      Hirundo
      rustica
  31. chickadees (paridae)
    1. Tufted Titmouse
      Baeolophus
      bicolor
  32. wrens (troglodytidae)
    1. Carolina Wren
      Thryothorus
      ludovicianus
    2. House Wren
      Troglodytes
      aedon
  33. gnatcatchers (sylviidae)
    1. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
      Polioptila
      caerulea
  34. shrikes (laniidae)
    1. Loggerhead Shrike
      Lanius
      ludovicianus
  35. old world warblers (muscicapidae)
    1. Eastern Bluebird
      Sialia
      sialis
    2. Grey-cheeked Thrush
      Catharus
      minimus
    3. American Robin
      Turdus
      migratorius
  36. mimid thrushes (mimidae)
    1. Gray Catbird
      Dumetella
      carolinensis
    2. Northern Mockingbird
      Mimus
      polyglottos
    3. Brown Thrasher
      Toxostoma
      rufum
  37. starlings (sturnidae)
    1. European Starling
      Sturnus
      vulgaris
  38. waxwings (bombycillidae)
    1. Cedar Waxwing
      Bombycilla
      cedrorum
  39. warblers (parulidae)
    1. Yellow-rumped Warbler
      Dendroica
      coronata
    2. Yellow-throated Warbler
      Dendroica
      dominica
    3. Pine Warbler
      Dendroica
      pinus
    4. Prairie Warbler
      Dendroica
      discolor
    5. Palm Warbler
      Dendroica
      palmarum
    6. Black-and-white Warbler
      Mniotilta
      varia
    7. Northern Parula
      Parula
      americana
    8. Common Yellowthroat
      Geothlypis
      trichas
  40. sparrows & allies (emberizidae)
    1. Eastern Towhee
      Pipilo
      erythrophthalmus
    2. Swamp Sparrow
      Melospiza
      georgiana
  41. grosbeaks & buntings (cardinalidae)
    1. Northern Cardinal
      Cardinalis
      cardinalis
    2. Painted Bunting
      Passerina
      ciris
    3. Red-breasted Grosbeak
      Pheucticus
      ludovicianus 
  42. blackbirds & orioles (icteridae)
    1. Red-winged Blackbird
      Agelaius
      phoeniceus
    2. Eastern Meadowlark
      Sturnella
      magna
  43. finches (fringillidae)
    1. American Goldfinch
      Carduelis
      tristis
  44. old world sparrows (passeridae)
    1. House Sparrow
      Passer
      domesticus

Plants

A few of the many plants that have been observed growing in the park.

Amphibians, Mammals and Reptiles

Some of the animals that have been observed active within the park.