Crane Point Nature Center

It was another beautiful day in paradise. We ate breakfast outside, in our screen room.  We had our annual checkups at noon with Dr. O’Connor. Then we took a real walk in the Crane Point Nature Center. Our first stop was the room with the orientation film to see how nice the room looks with the huge turtle shells mounted on the wall. The walls behind the screen have been painted with leaves.

Then we went to the cracker house to see the new/old shell exhibit.  Neighbors Sue and Mac have been working on it for months.  I’m not sure of the actual division of labor, but think Sue cleaned up the shells in the old exhibit and made new labels. There are a lot of shells in the collection and she looked them up to verify that they were all labeled correctly.  Maybe Mac built the new shadow boxes.  Sue also arranged some of the shells on sand in a jewelry case. In addition to the shells, she made an exhibit of sea beans that may have been her own collection.

We are so impressed with the job they did! It was a lot of work and they did a beautiful job. Here is most of the exhibit. A local artist painted the underwater scene on the front of the case. I love the waves in the back of the case behind the sand. I remember Sue and Mac talking about the job of putting the lights in the case.  They look great.

Sumac Shell Display

Here is a slightly close look of the case and the shells.

Shell Case Closer Up

I did not get a single picture of a shadow box of shells that doesn’t have reflections on it.  Maybe this one will give you an idea of how cool it is.

Sumac Shadow Box

And, here is Sue’s sea bean collection mounted on a fabric map of the world.  Where did she get that map?  She is so clever and artistic.  So is Mac.

Sumac Sea Bean Display

After ooo-ing and ahh-ing over the display, we took our usual walk around Crane Point.  We were delighted to see the Prickly Pear Cactus in bloom.

s Cactus Blooms


s Prickly Pear Cactus Bloom

I took a few pictures of the Crane House, which was started in 1954.  It is rather run down and not open to visitors.

s Crane House Back

We walked around to the water side where there is a picture of that side of the house. It had open water views on both sides. The pool is sea water that comes in a narrow opening.

s Crane House

But, now the pool is being taken over by mangroves and the house is obscured.

s Swimming Pool

There were plenty of spiders hanging about.  This is the first one we encountered.  She is a beautiful Golden Orb Weaver.

s Golden Orb Weaver

We saw some kayakers out at the point.  They paddled under the bridge and on east across wide water.

s Kayaks

We stopped at the wild bird hospital.  A few years ago, boating buddies Martin and Betsy bought a picture of a cormorant.  The striking feature was the eye.  I’ve been trying ever since to get a picture of one too.  This cormorant was sitting right next to front of the cage, at my camera height.  I didn’t get the picture I was going for, but I did get a good eye. Isn’t it amazing?

s Cormorant

I was inspired by my eye picture and took a few more in the bird hospital.

s Hawk Eye

s Merlin

s Pelican Eye


s Red Shouldered Hawk

We headed back toward the museum and passed the osprey nest atop a tall pole.  As we approached, one of the adults took flight, hovering and squawking.  The one left on the nest glared at us.

s Osprey Watching Me

This road back to the museum is a tunnel through the trees.  There are plenty of spider webs and spiders along there.
s Tunnel Through Trees


One thought on “Crane Point Nature Center

  1. Bob Barclay April 9, 2015 / 11:41 am

    In the early morning carry a stick to knock down the low spider webs on the plan trail and any trail that is narrow.


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