Education | Conservation | Advocacy

Manatee County

Audubon Society

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The Felts Audubon Preserve

Open Houses

Held the 1st Saturday November – April 8am-12pm 

Guided walks start at 9am. 

  • November 1, 2025 Including Bird Walk
  • December 7, 2025 Including Bird Walk
  • January 4, 2026 Including Bird Walk 
  • February 1, 2026 Including Bird Walk
  • March 1, 2026 Including Bird Walk 
  • April 5, 2026 Including Bird Walk 

Join Us for our Conservation Days!

Held the last Saturday of each month 8am-11am

  • May 25, 2024
  • June 29, 2024
  • July 27, 2024
  • August 31, 2024
  • September 28, 2024
  • October 25, 2024
  • November 29, 2024
  • December 27, 2024
View Felts Audubon Preserve's Hotspot

This place is "For the Birds...and for Birders!"

While we come up with innovative ways to provide opportunities to educate the public on environmental issues, the land is being used by an abundance of different animals including many migratory birds. We have documented 194 avian species and 33 butterfly species at Felts Audubon Preserve! 
 
***No pets are allowed within this conservation property.***

This Place is "For the Birds"...

Birds you may encounter while visiting: At Felts, the Manatee Audubon Society has documented sightings of 194 avian species on eBird. Depending upon the season, birders may see: Great Horned Owl, Pileated Woodpecker, Indigo and Painted Bunting, thrushes, warblers, vireos, herons, egrets and ducks. Be sure to check out the Eastern Bluebird nesting boxes!

A Must-See at the Preserve: The bird blind provides visitors an excellent opportunity for up-close viewing and photography of the wide array of species attracted to the blind’s many feeders. During migration and winter, the much-sought-after Indigo and Painted Bunting often visit the blind. 

View Felts Audubon Preserve's Hotspot

The Painted Bunting

The Painted Bunting is a signature bird at Felts Audubon Preserve. 

Enjoy this video captured by Claire Herzog at Felts Preserve in late December 2013.

Improvements continue, including managing footpaths, an enhanced bird blind for comfortable wildlife observation, and habitat restoration. A variety of habitats are found on our small preserve, including freshwater ponds, open fields, mixed conifer forests, hardwood hammocks, and bay swamps to attract a wide variety of wildlife, especially migratory and nesting birds and colorful butterflies. 

Take a walk on the wild side by visiting Felts Audubon Preserve today!

More about Felts Audubon Preserve

Felts Audubon Preserve is a 28 acre property that was acquired by Manatee Audubon 2002 from the estate of Otis & Anita Felts in hopes to keep it a greenspace for wildlife.
 

In May 2020 Manatee County Audubon Society (MCAS) partnered with the Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast to grant Felts Preserve a conservation easement. This easement will ensure that no matter who the owner the property will always be a 28 acre preserve. The property is owned by Manatee County Audubon Society as a bird sanctuary.

The property contains a variety of bird habitats, including mesic hammock, ponds, and grasslands, and the diversity of habitats and bird species supports bird watching and other passive recreation, as well as educational experiences. The wetland area provides foraging, breeding, and shelter habitat for wetland-associated wildlife.

Our bird blind on the property is very popular with our visitors; it includes several feeders and a fountain to attract birds year-round. The blind is one of the reliable places to see the Painted and Indigo Bunting as they spend their winters in Florida.

We have recently added 2 wonderful additions to the preserve:
● Felts Preserve Landscape Native Gardens- Planted as you enter our popular bird blind, the gardens are an example of how to use native plants as gardens and landscapes around your home. Educational signs are there to help the visitors understand the importance of planting natives and how they can contribute.
● Microforest- A .4 acre area at Felts Audubon Preserve that has recently been densely planted with native plants ranging from canopy trees to shrubs, flowers, grasses and groundcover. The tiny and dense patches of forest create biodiversity hotspots that help fight climate change. Additional benefits to our preserve was to take an area that was not providing anything to the natural environment and planting it with natives that will be hosts and habitat to wildlife. This area will also have 2 viewing areas for visitors to appreciate the nature around them.

Many of our wonderful native plants are purchased at-
Sweetbay Nursery.
Give them a visit herehttps://sweetbaynursery.com/