The Back Nine Blog - Life in Our Gated Community in Florida

The Back Nine

an Orchid Island Golf & Beach Club Blog

July 24, 2018
Meet Our Cherished Natural Neighbors: Orchid Island’s Wildlife

Orchid Island’s commitment to preserving the beautiful natural habitats that surround the Club means the area is teeming with wildlife.  Here’s a short list of just a few of the many species that you may encounter while enjoying your time here at Orchid Island.  

AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN This big, beautiful bird uses its mouth to scoop up fish for dinner. The White Pelican is far more rare than Brown Pelicans, unless you’re at Orchid Island where you can spot them on the golf course lakes. They certainly flock together in our many nature preserves.  Do you think they know that the golf course is part of the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program?  

SEA TURTLES Did you know that loggerhead sea turtles return to the same nesting beaches for generations? As a result, every year from May til October, we’ll find turtle tracks on the beach at first light.  Loggerhead, green sea turtles, and the occasional leatherback turtle, return to our shores to lay their eggs, and their nests are highly protected by State Law.  Keep your eyes peeled and you might see the turtle babies escaping from the sand, making their first journey to the sea! It’s truly unforgettable.  

OSPREY Ospreys are known to be incredibly adaptable--they can be found living throughout the US, from the mountains of Montana and to the shores of South Florida. The Florida ospreys are most prevalent along the waterfront, which serves as vibrant fishing grounds for this majestic bird. You’ll find them soaring high above the community, spanning from the Atlantic Ocean to the Indian River.    

RIVER OTTERS It’s always exciting to find river otters sliding in and out of the mangrove areas along the Indian River shoreline and throughout the community. The way that they call to each other and swim through the water is so engaging! River otters tend to stick together in pairs. It’s best to watch them from a distance--when you spot one, you can be sure that there’s another nearby.  

MANATEES These gentle giants are also known as sea cows.  The slow moving mammals are often seen in the shallow waters of the Indian River estuary, grazing on river grass.  Drawn to the warm Florida waters, manatees are very friendly and often interact with the neighbors who are merely human. Did you know that manatees are a close genetic cousin of elephants? They may not have the ears, but they do have the familiar grey, wrinkly skin!  

GREAT EGRET You probably recognize these slim, white birds wading around the mangroves, walking through yards, and strolling the golf course. The National Audubon Society was founded to help protect these and other birds over the past century.  They’ve done a wonderful job, which is why they are so prevalent throughout Florida today.  

Orchid Island works hard to preserve a way of life for, not only the natural neighbors who live in the area, but the people who live here as well. The Club’s intimate layout creates the perfect environment for these creatures to thrive in concert with our members. The Arnold Palmer Golf Course is proudly Audubon certified and the secluded beach offers more than a mile of private oceanfront. For those who want to get close to nature and enjoy the creature comforts of home, the beach club and country club amenities are second to none.     

Love the Vero location? Click here to download the Golf Community Comparison Guide to see how Orchid Island stacks up against the other Clubs in the area. For a full list of available real estate listings at Orchid Island, visit  

Request the inaugural issue or Orchid Island Magazine here to learn more about how nature coexists with the residents and all that there is to do.

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