U.S. Coast Guard Issued Masters License Graduate Florida's Master Naturalist Program Member Friends of the Cedar Key's and Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuges U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Permitted Guide Member National Audubon Society Member Cedar Key Chamber of Commerce Member Cedar Key Historical Society Advanced First Aid and CPR Certified
CAPTAIN J. Michael O'Dell
The majority of our tours take place within The Cedar Keys and Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuges. The natural beauty and serenity of these areas will captivate you. All tours are accompanied by comprehensive narration and a question and answer period. Topics of interest often include the tidal marsh eco-system, water quality, native and migratory birds, animals, marine life, the aquaculture industry and Cedar Key's rich history.
The Island Tour travels to the outer islands of the Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuge. This scenic route usually encounters dolphins and various birds, depending on the season of the year. Occasionally we will encounter manatees, sea turtles and/ or spotted eagle rays. This trip is an excellent choice for those who wish to experience a balanced overview of Cedar Key history and the natural aspects of our rich and diverse ecosystem. The route and activities vary according to the season of the year and the weather conditions. This is a 1 1/2-to-2 hours tour. The cost is $26 per person with discounts for 12 years old and under. There is usually a stop-over on at least one island.
The Suwannee River Tour travels northward along the shallow coastline for approximately 13 miles before entering the world famous Suwannee River. At this point the ecosystem changes rapidly from a primarily salt water/estuarine environment to a primarily fresh water river/swamp ecosystem. The route then extends approximately six miles up the river, including excursions into some seemingly enchanted waterways which narrow and run off the main channel. Plant and animal sightings vary according to the season. The shallow, near-shore route to the Suwannee River is tide dependant and not always available. This tour takes approximately 3-to-4 hours. The cost is $45.00 + tax per person. The Coastal Marsh Tour winds through miles of remote, undeveloped, unspoiled coastal marsh. This stretch of shallow coastline is virtually inaccessible by vehicle and seldom traveled by boat. This trip appeals to those who experience satisfaction in knowing that they are traveling into areas where others seldom go. From Fall through Spring, this trip focuses heavily on our abundant population of migratory shorebirds. This trip is also very tide dependant and not always available. This is a 2-to-3 hour tour. The charge is $35.00 + tax per person.