Our Natural Neighbors: Wildlife that Calls the Neighborhoods of World Golf Village Home

Posted by: Matt Davidson in Uncategorized

fox squirrelNot too long ago I spied some wild turkeys strolling around the King & Bear front entrance.  It was really early in the morning, the sun was just coming up and I think I said a soft “morning” to those turkeys as if I was nodding at my neighbors leaving for work.  It’s great to be reminded of all the creatures that call our community home.  In fact, a fantastic variety of wildlife thrive here.  Some of our lesser known “neighbors” include bobcats, wild hogs and even black bears. Fox squirrels are one of my favorite.  They are bigger and more exotic looking than the common grey squirrels that dart around our lawns. In fact, they are the largest species of tree squirrels in North America. I snapped this photo of a fox squirrel right here in the King & Bear. 

For me, seeing an otter in the wild, right here in Royal Pines, was an amazing experience. Since I’ve been living in Northeast Florida for most of my life, I was under the impression that I had seen all of the wildlife the area had to offer. So I was understandably surprised one night when I was walking my dog and caught a glimpse of a funny creature waddling across the street. It never crossed my mind it could be an otter until it stepped into the light. It was going from one lake to another. While otters are graceful in the water, they definitely have a clumsy looking hop waddle when they move on land.

It’s also interesting to see a common animal through new eyes. My most memorable encounter with an armadillo occurred when family friends where visiting from Zimbabwe. Richard had grown up in Africa around all kinds of animals where he often would catch some just to get a closer look. Like a Zimbabwean version of Steve Erwin, once he had decided he was going to catch something he wouldn’t stop. Every night after dinner we would walk the dogs and he would try to catch what was becoming his white whale – the armadillo. We were all surprised he was so intrigued by the common armadillo. So after many attempts and failures, Richard managed to catch an armadillo on one of his last days here. He raised it up in victory and couldn’t understand why his family and mine start laughing. The armadillo that he managed to catch after all that effort only had three legs. It scurried away while Richard’s face was still red.

We asked around the neighborhood, and here’s a list of the wildlife folks have spied in our St. Augustine golf course community.  What have you seen?
Nature 8242E CMYKWhitetail Deer
Wild turkey
Fox squirrels
Wild hogs
Grey squirrels
Black bear
Mocking bird
Black bird
Snakes: Eastern diamond, Pigmy rattler, Cottonmouth moccasin, Corn snake, Black Racer
Wild hogs
Ducks-many varieties


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