Approaching the fort
Excited tourists have their eyes on Fort Jefferson as we approach Garden Key.
Where to park?
Shoot, I left my sea plane at home
There is a moat all around Fort Jefferson, even though it is on an island and at least 70 miles from land
Bush Key, right off of Garden Key, is home to nesting Sooty Terns and Brown Noddys.
Stairs in Fort Jefferson
Corals, sea fan, worms, and other encrusting organisms cover the submerged section of the moat
Snorkeling around the fort
The shallow waters surrounding the fort make for excellent snorkeling, even for kids. Just make sure you keep those fins off the bottom to avoid damaging delicate creatures like this coral and Christmas Tree Worms!
Sea grass self portrait
Sea grass is abundant in the Dry Tortugas.
Sea grass in the shallows of Fort Jefferson
Visitors to the fort can explore sea grass beds right off the beach.
Shallow sea grass habitat is critical for foraging sea turtles, and provides a home to many types of fish and invertebrates, like sea biscuits and the Queen Conch
Sea grass, soft corals, and juvenile fish all inhabit the shallows off the moat wall. Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida.
A stunning sunset with anti-crepuscular rays from the top of Fort Jefferson, looking out towards Bush Key in the Dry Tortugas, FL.
So happy to be in the Dry Tortugas!
Hatchlings walking into the sea
Loggerhead hatchlings that were stuck in their nest are released into the night and walk towards the moon into the ocean (the light on the top left is the moon).
Kayla searching for Lionfish
Gull on Piling
A Gull hangs out on an old piling off Garden Key
Under the piers
Tarpon and Snappers among a baitball of silversides
A swirling mass of silversides
Dusk from Fort Jefferson
The end of the day at Fort Jefferson, Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida.
Green Turtle Hatchling
A very large, very healthy, Green Turtle hatchling from East Key. This hatchling and 13 others were found during a nest excavation several days after the other hatchlings emerged.