Throughout the Gadsden County region lovers of the outdoors can enjoy a variety of nature and wildlife. At different times of the year will see:

Eastern Bluebird, Swallow-Tailed Kite, Northern Cardinal, Screech Owl, Chipping Sparrow, Hooded Merganser, Scarlet Tanger, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Song Sparrow, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Red-Shouldered Hawk, Great Blue Heron, Eastern Meadowlark, Great Egret, and more.

Great Florida Birding Trail


Adams’s Needle, Whitetop Pitcherplant, Leavenworth’s Tickseed, Coral Honeysuckle, Sundial Lupine, Stokes’ Aster, Daisy Fleabane, Butterweed, and Beggersticks.

Monarch, Buckeye, Spring Azure, Red Admiral, Hackberry Emperor, Giant Swallowtail, Red-spotted Purple, Painted Lady, Little Metalmark, Carolina Satyr, Twin Spot Skipper, Red-banded Hairstreak, Giant Swallowtail, Cabbage White, and Cloudless Sulphur



A wealth of viewing opportunities for wildlife, birds and wildflowers await visitors, while the educational focus of this forest provides an array of learning experiences. Visitors can experience the audio-enhanced Living Forest Trail, where the trees tell their own stories.

Hiking and nature trails on this 492-acre tract of Lake Talquin State Forest meander through many natural communities, including wetlands, sandhills and dramatic ravines. Along with a variety of birds and wildlife, an abundance of tree species are found in the forest. 

There are three trails marked with orange (3 miles), blue (2 miles), and green (3/4 mile ADA trail) blazes. Bear Creek State Forest is free and open to the public from sunrise to sunset. Wear long pants, comfortable walking shoes, insect repellent and bring plenty of water. Pack a lunch if you plan on exploring one of the longer trails.