Landmarks of Miami

Miami is known because of the wide and popular beach it has. Due to those beach resorts, it is no surprise why it became one of the hottest vacation spots in the world. All places in Miami are featuring its own landmarks and attractions, which are the reasons why even in just staying in one area of Miami, the tourist will still have fun spending their vacation there. However, the beach spots and attractions of the area are not the only ones that attract tourist to come in Miami. All the Miami landmarks and historic spots are also major contributions that attract people to come and visit the place. For people planning to spend their vacation in the place, the following Miami attractions and landmarks must also be on the top list of the places you must go and visit

Freedom Tower: This Historic Miami tower is located on Biscayne Boulevard and is near the American Airlines Arena. It is located on the eastern part of the downtown Miami, which is close on the waterfront where the Mediterranean Revival-styled architectures are being boasted about. Freedom Tower is listed as one of the US National Historic Landmarks, which was made in 2008. The tower was built around the middle of 1920s to serve as Miami News head office and was vacated in 1957. During the sixties, the tower was made as the base of the Federal Government in which the offices were used in processing immigration requests. Starting the seventies, the ownership changed for several times. Freedom Tower is said to be at its best when it is viewed from far away.

The Miami Circle: It is one of the most popular Miami attractions. Miami Circle was discovered in the year 1998. It consists of 24 holes that were cut into its limestone bedrock. It is said to house a permanent structure once, which was built by those Tequesta Indians. It was also said that the structure could have been the capital structure in the village, which is believed to be 1700 to 2000 years old. At present, The Miami Circle is already serving as a public park.

Vizcaya Museums and Garden: This is one of the Miami landmarks that you will enjoy visiting and exploring in the place. It was built by an American Industrialist in the name of James Deering in 1916. It was built to serve as their vacation home during the winter season. Currently, it is already one of the must-see attractions of the place. Visiting Vizcaya Museums and Gardens will let visitors and tourists see the lives of those super wealthy people during 1920s. Vizcaya’s gardens are usually used as quinceañera and photo sessions because of its own eye-catching and breathtaking beauty.

Opa-Locka City Hall: If ever you are in Miami, never forget to include on your list of must see Miami Landmarks the Opa-Locka City Hall. It is considered as the unique and most unusual landmarks in the area. It appears like those palatial Indian mosques rather than the traditional city halls in America. The city hall was built sometime in 1920 by the renowned aviation pioneer and property developer, Glenn Hammond.

Miami is not just about the hottest beach resorts, but it is also about the most significant places that already made a name in the history. Miami is not just about fun and beach exploration, but also about learning several things, which are aided by all Miami landmarks and historical attractions in the place.

Most Authentic Cuban Experiences to have in Miami

The Cuban culture and heritage in the attractions in Miami is everywhere – in the music, the architecture, the food, the dance, and even in the people. You don’t to need to travel all the way to Cuba for an authentic Latin experience when it’s right there in Miami, in all its glory.

No Worries, Communism Remains Only on the Island

The spirit of Cuba lives on in this tropical city with the salsa dancing, the Art Deco structures, the busy sidewalk cafés, cabaret shows, hand-rolled cigars, open-air games of dominos, silver sand beaches and clear, warm waters. Here are some ways to experience the city’s Cuban influence during your Miami excursions.

1. Smoke a hand-rolled Cuban cigar at El Credito Cigar Factory

In the rolling room at the El Credito Cigar Factory you can take a free tour to watch hand-crafted cigars taking shape right in front of you! Watching the expert cigar rollers effortlessly create the famous Cuban cigars is a great experience. The El Credito Cigar Factory is the oldest cigar factory to be operating in the United States of America. It has an exclusive collection of cigars that come in 23 signature sizes, including El Rico Habano, La Gloria Cubana, El Credito International and Serie R to name a few. Kick back in one of the lou nge chairs and enjoy your cigar. The store is open from Monday through Friday, between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.

rollers at El Credito Cigar Factory

2. Enjoy a cup of steaming Cuban coffee at Casa Larios

Casa Larios is one of the best places for Cuban coffee in Miami. Try their cortido which is a blend of pre-sweetened coffee and milk. Your experience here is complimented by the live-music blaring from the middle of the room and the locals who come here to get their daily cup of coffee and gossip. This place promotes social interaction between customers so don’t be surprised if someone strikes up a conversation with you. The doors to the restaurant open at 7 am and close at 11 pm. So no matter when you feel the urge for a pick-me-up cup of coffee, you’re sure to find one at Casa Larios.

3. Head to Hoy Como Ayer in Little Havana to catch live Latin acts

Hoy Como Ayer in Little Havana is a great place to hang out to unwind and catch Latin acts in an authentic Cuban ambience. Every Wednesday the bar has the group Tropicasa which features DJ Oscar G, Michael Fragoso, The Chinese Red Lion, DJ Casanova, and Philbert Armenteros. Thursday nights is another great day of the week for Latin tunes at Hoy Como which features DJ Spam All Nights. On the weekends, the bar has occasional performances on Fridays and Saturdays, including a special VIP performance by Amaury Gutierrez once a month. Check their calendar for their latest acts.

4. Have a Cuban Meal at Miami’s Oldest Restaurant, Versailles

For lunch try the Cuban chicken and rice at Versailles restaurant – a hotspot for Miami’s older Cuban generation to conglomerate over meals and conversation. It is one of the most popular culinary attractions in Miami.

Downtown Miami’s Best Restaurants

The attractions in Miami are bound to keep you coming back for more. That is when the wonderful cuisine of the city comes in. Miami is famous for its waterfront structures. Take the downtown waterfront area for example. There’s much to do here in the downtown district such as shopping, art, history, music, and dining. Here are the top restaurants in Miami’s Downtown district.

1. Tobacco Road

Tobacco Road opened its doors back in 1912 and is Miami’s oldest bar. It has seen pretty much everything, from the hurricanes to the construction of the Art Deco District. Tobacco Road has truly stood the test of time. There is live music that plays every night in this Downtown Miami bar and it is one of the best places to head to for eclectic fusion sounds like Latin reggae.

You will find many music lovers who come here to see local acts and musicians. Their monthly calendar has a lineup of events and performances of all the live Latin music acts in the city. While you’re here try the “Death Burger,” served with jalapeno peppers, sautéed onions, and melted jalapeno jack cheese.

Tobacco Road in Miami

2. P.F Chang’s China Bistro

PF Chang’s China Bistro is an iconic Oriental restaurant in Miami. The dishes on the menu here is infused with vibrant spices, fresh herbs, crisp vegetables, and sweet fruit that is complemented with an extensive wine selection. Don’t miss the salt and pepper calamari and the orange peel beef.

3. Zuma

Zuma is a delightful little cafe in Miami’s Downtown district. While you’re here, don’t miss the green tea-banana cake, a moist and dense treat, striped at the bottom by a layer of green tea cake. There are succulent banana disks at the apex of the cake with a sweet, syrupy toffee topping and a generous dollop of a cooling coconut gelato.

Zuma Miami

4. Jackson Soul Food

Jackson Soul Food has stuff that really hits the spot without you having to head all the way to the Good South. Try the grits, which is a popular breakfast item and served here at Jackson’s with boiled fish, catfish, liver or pork chops. While the grits are a true revelation, also try the eggs, pancakes and waffles.

5. Sushi Siam

Sushi Siam is yet another popular restaurant in the Downtown district of Miami that serves blends and combinations of a variety of herbs, spices and flavours.  The spicy, fiery cuisine served here is a favourite among both locals and tourists.

Sushi Siam uses the freshest ingredients and the culinary staff is constantly thinking up of innovations for more nutritious and wholesome meals. Among things to try are soft-shell crab, shrimp dumplings, conch and cucumber in a rich tangy vinegar sauce, shrimp in a blanket, hiyashi wakame and spicy beef salad, sea scallops curry, the Thai style Siam steak and the delectable Thai fish curry all prepared in their unique signature style.

Sushi Siam Miami

Smallest Creatures You will find in the Everglades National Park

There are many tiny little creatures that call the Everglades home and if you’re lucky, you will find them on the airboat tours. Here are some of them to watch out for.

1. Big Cypress Fox Squirrel

The Big Cypress Fox squirrel has a bushy tail. Except for the Keys, it is found everywhere in Florida, especially along the Caloosahatchee River and in the southern part of Dade county. These squirrels spend plenty of time on the ground foraging for insects, mushrooms, nuts, buds, acorns and tubers.

The big cypress fox squirrel

2. Florida Marsh Rabbit

The only species of rabbits that can be found in the Everglades National Park are marsh rabbits and they are commonly seen along beaches, estuaries, shorelines, marshes, swamps, rivers, lakes, ponds, and streams of the park. These strong swimmers are found near permanent sources of water. They are nocturnal and are most active at dusk or dawn. Their diet consists of bulbs and leaves of marshy plants.

3. Key Largo Cotton Mouse

The Key Largo cotton mouse is the largest subspecies of the common cotton mouse and can be found in the tropical hardwood hammocks of Big Cypress National Preserve. These mice build their leaf-lined nests in fallen logs, hollow tree stumps, and the crevices of limestone rocks. This nocturnal mouse is often seen climbing on the limbs of trees, foraging for food. The Key Largo cotton mouse uses a symphony of short musical barking sounds in order to communicate with each other.

4. The Apple Snail

The Apple snail is the largest fresh water snail in North America and comprises the main dietary component of the snail kite. This golf ball-sized creature lives in the tropical and sub-tropical freshwaters of the Everglades. It is also an important food source for turtles, alligators, fish, and many species of wading birds.

5. Eastern Woodrat

The Eastern woodrat is a bushy-tailed rodent that feed on green vegetation, shoots, twigs, fungi, roots, fruits, buds, seeds and acorns in the Everglades National Park. These rats are also known as packrats and live inside holes in the ground or in the hollows of trees. They make large nests for their young all through the park.

The Eastern Woodrat

6. Southern Flying Squirrel

Southern flying squirrels are the smallest tree squirrels to be found in the Everglades National Park and are seen among the pine and hardwood trees of the Big Cypress National Preserve. They build nests in trees such as oak, hickory, and walnut and are known to feed on nuts and seeds.

7. Florida Salt Marsh Vole

The Florida Salt Marsh Vole is a tiny short-tailed rodent that is only about 7 inches long. It is a subspecies of the Meadow Vole.  The salt marsh vole can be found in high salt marsh areas in the Everglades National Park, among patches of black rush and seashore salt grass. This endangered species is herbivorous and feeds on seeds, leaves, barks, grass, nuts, fungi, berries, tubers, bulbs, insects, and snails.

The Florida Swamp Marsh Vole

Most Effective Ways to Recover from a Crazy Party Night in Miami

There are so many nightlife attractions in Miami that you will find it hard to choose from. There are so many different kind of bar and club experiences to be had. One of the best ways to experience the attractions in Miami and the nightlife in the city, is to engage a Miami bus tour.

Pat yourself on the Back – You made the Right Call

These tours take you to the popular hotspots around the city and allow you the freedom of getting off the bus when you want to explore them on your own. But after the night is done and the morning dawns, chances are that you won’t really feel like a million bucks. Here are some effective ways to recover from a crazy night out on the town in Miami.

1. Have a Vegan Meal at Sublime

Natural organic foods are great to restore your sense of health and well-being after a hectic night-out. Sublime by Nanci Alexander has been serving up great natural and organic fare since 1989. The restaurant has often been given pats on the back for its vegan menu and high-energy atmosphere. It has even won a place in the ‘Top 10 Vegetarian Restaurant’ nationally by USA Today.

Their vegan takes on popular comfort food is definitely worth a mention like the ‘Mac ‘N’ Cheese’ in a Dijon béchamel cheddar sauce with panko breadcrumbs or the Mushroom Ravioli with homemade pasta, slow-roasted tomato butter sauce, basil and cashew cream.

Vegan Bread at Sublime bakery

2. Take a Long Walk on the Beach

A long, relaxing walk is super if you want to rejuvenate yourself. Try Matheson Hammock Park Beach in Key Biscayne which is a secluded and tranquil spot where you can enjoy some quiet time. This man-made lagoon is a great place to take a dip as the water is especially calm.

If you’d like a little more hustle and bustle, head to the eclectic South Beach or SoBe, as it is popularly called. It is famous worldwide not only for its pristine, aquamarine waters and white sands but also for the tons of activities that line the boardwalk. South Beach has something for everyone. The beach has paths for bikers and skaters. One of the best ways to see SoBe is to take a walk.

Matheson Hammock Park in Key Biscayne

3. Grab a Healthy Juice at Pura Vida

Pura Vida is famous for its popular açaí berry bowls and its Latin American vibe. If you’re in the mood for a freshly-squeezed single juice, try their mango, guava, watermelon, and passion fruit. They also serve natural juice blends such as the Eternal Youth Cocktail (carrots, cucumber, parsley, kale, spinach, celery, beet, romaine, garlic, lime, and lemon) and the Tropical Pura Vida (kiwi, mango, and pineapple).

4. Detox at The Spa at Mandarin Oriental

The spa at the Mandarin Oriental one of the most popular attractions in Miami. This tri-level spa is well known for its regenerative and innovative treatments, influenced by ancient Ayurvedic, Thai, Chinese, and European cultures.

The Mandarin Oriental

Reasons to Go On the Glass Bottom Boat Tours in Key West

While there are many things that lure thousands of tourists to the tropical island paradise like the nightlife, the food, the water sports and the snorkeling in Key West, nothing comes to spectacular reef that the island is blessed with. The tropical island is home to the third largest living coral reef in the world which is inhabited by many species of marine life.

Traveling and Sight Seeing

The reef and the marine life within it is best seen by snorkeling in the emerald waters of Key West. For those who do not want to get wet, there’s always the glass bottom boat tour. Here are some reasons why you should go on the glass bottom tour in Key West.

1. You can see the reef without getting wet

The glass bottom boat tours provide you with the unique to explore Key West’s underwater marine paradise in close quarters with even getting wet. To see the kind of sea life up close that you do on the glass bottom boat tours, usually you have to go scuba diving or snorkeling in Key West. But with the glass bottom boat tours, you can do it in the comfort of a state-of-the-art catamaran. You will be taken about 7 miles into the open water for a two hour long trip to see the spectacular coral.

A Key West coral reef

2. You will get to see tons of exotic marine life

While you are on a glass bottom boat tour, you will see different exotic species of fish and other sea creatures as well as the biologically diverse marvel that is the coral reef of Key West. Over 300 of the most exotic species of marine life call the magnificent brain coral and majestic elkhorn coral home. While the coral reefs may look sturdy and resilient, they are actually quite fragile and delicate.

3. The tours are educative and informative

Each glass bottom boat tour is headlined by an experienced captain and crew who will show you many interesting things in the ocean as well as give you an informative eco-tour. The entire bottom of the boat is made of glass so you will easily be able to see the ocean bed.

A spotted sting ray, one of the common forms of marine life seen in Key West

4. The catamarans are state-of-the-art and offer premium comfort

The state-of-the-art catamaran is specially designed to allow maximum stability. This means that the boat will rock less. Even those tourists prone to seasickness can enjoy your time on the glass bottom boat tour. The boat also has a beautiful sun deck and an air-conditioned viewing area. Snack bars and clean washrooms are also provided. The boats are designed so as to provide maximum viewing with minimum damage to the delicate reef.

A catamaran in Key West

5. Many marvelous experiences are included in your glass bottom boat tour

When you go on a glass bottom boat tour, you be able to enjoy tons of awesome stuff like:

  • State-of-the-art catamarans
  • Air-conditioned enclosed areas for viewing
  • Seated sundecks
  •  Expert tour guides
  • Snack bar

Reasons to Choose Miami as the Destination for Your Romantic Getaway

If you’ve wanted to plan a romantic getaway, the ‘Magic City’ might be perfect for you with its picturesque nature, as well as the cultural and historical excursions in Miami that you and your loved one can embark on.

Freedom is Bliss

Some of the best ways to see the city at your own pace is the hop-on-hop-off bus tours. If you enjoy your liberty and do not want to attend a tour that is strictly regulated, that is fine. You are in the right place here. You can always attend a more regulated tour the next day or perhaps you already did the day before.

These tours allow you to leave the bus whenever you find something interesting you’d like to explore, and then hop back on when you’re ready to sightsee some more because these bases run on a continuous loop. Right from romantic gardens, parks, spectacular sunsets at the beach, and candlelight dinners – Miami has it all. Here are some reasons to choose Miami as the destination for your romantic holiday.

1. Miami abounds with scenic nature

The magic city abounds with nature parks and natural reserves which make for the perfect setting for a romantic date. Head to the beautiful wetlands and forests of Secret Woods Nature Centre to find some quiet time with your beloved.  Take a walk on the two nature trails here, one of which passes through a beautiful butterfly garden.

Fern Forest Nature Centre spans 254-acres of pristine forested beauty with boardwalks and plenty of hiking trails. The tropical hardwood hammocks, pineland and drained Everglades slough that make up the 30-acres of the Bill Sadowski Park and Nature Centre is a great place to go fishing or canoeing. Other nature reserves to check out are Anne Kolb Nature Centre, and A.D. Barnes Park.

Secret Woods Nature Centre

2. Miami is home to some of the most romantic restaurants in the world

It is often said that the way to someone’s heart is through their stomach. The magic city is sure to wow your taste buds and your heart with its culinary delights. Try Villa Azur, a quaint little restaurant that is reminiscent of old-world Paris. It has a lounge cum library that is equipped with modern fireplaces which open up to a courtyard on the patio.

The highlights of the restaurant is the oz. Chateaubriand steak which is served with foie gras and béarnaise sauce. Casa Tua is another restaurant worth a mention. For an intimate and private dining experience head to the second level lounge and or the romantic garden terrace of this Mediterranean-style restaurant . Other places to check out are Red Fish Grill, Villa Mayfair Restaurant & Lounge, and Cecconi’s.

The interior of Villa Azur

3. The accommodation options in Miami are built for romance

If you are travelling with that special someone, your vacation needs to be romantic, enchanting and passionate down to the last detail of where you’ll be staying. Miami is home to some of the most opulent hotels with spectacular views that are sure to set the mood for your romantic getaway.

The Villa by Barton G is a luxury boutique hotel with only 10 suites so it is rather secluded. Each suite has a private balcony with a view of the ocean. Book the Amber Suit with its outdoor terrace and marble soaking tub.

The Villa by Barton G

Why it is Vital to Conserve the Delicate Ecosystem of the Everglades National Park

While the airboat tours are what draw most people to the Everglades National Park, there is so much more to see and do. The park is an ecological goldmine that slowly seems to be in danger of depletion.  Here are some reasons why it is absolutely vital to help protect the delicate ecosystem of the Everglades National Park.

1. The unique ecology is the only one of its kind

The Everglades National Park is the largest subtropical wetland ecosystem in Northern America, the largest mangrove ecosystem in the western hemisphere, and the largest wilderness in the Southeast. The Everglades is home to the largest stand of sawgrass prairie in North America. The park is made up of 8 different types of natural features and unique ecosystems namely the hardwood hammocks, the pine rocklands, mangroves, coastal lowlands, freshwater slough, marine & estuary, freshwater marl prairie and cypress strands.

A Cypress Ecosystem in the Everglades

2. The Everglades is the exclusive home to the ghost orchid

The Ghost Orchid is one of the rarest kinds of orchids in the world that is found only in the Everglades National Park. It has long, curly spikes that seem to float in the air and a ghostly white color. The roots of the ghost orchid are the weirdest thing about the plant as they seem to emerge from its center and creep around the tree upon which it is growing. Ghost orchids can adapt very well and are found growing on the rough bark of the cypress trees in swampy areas.

A ghost orchid

3. This is the only place in the world where you can find the Florida Panther and the Snail Kite

The unique natural ecosystem of the Everglades is a habitat conducive for the existence of several species of flora and fauna that are native only to the Everglades National Park. The elusive Florida Panther inhabits the hardwood hammocks and the dry pineland forests of the park. This big cat has adapted itself to hunt and even swim in the freshwater of the park. The snail kite lives in the Everglades as its prey, the apple snail, is found only in swampy, subtropical landscape of the park where freshwater meets saltwater.

An adult Florida Panther

4. The Everglades National Park is commercially viable

The Everglades ecosystem provides economic, recreational and other important benefits that improve the quality of life of every single person in South Florida. The preservation of the Everglades is vital to regulate South Florida’s water supply. According to a recent study, that there are $4 generated in economic benefits for every $1 that is invested into the restoration of the Everglades. This will result in the creation of over 400,000 jobs in the real estate and tourism industries. Florida Bay, in the Everglades National Park is economically significant as it supports a 22 million dollar stone crab fishery as well as a 59 million dollar shrimp fishery.

Most Interesting Places for the History Buff Visiting Key West

The tropical island calls many things its own such as its pirate history, amazing sunsets, water sports, scuba diving and snorkeling in Key West that attract tourists from all over the world. But there is also much culture and art to be explored in this island paradise. The cultural history dates back to the 20th century where it can be seen today in the island’s art galleries, festivals, monuments, and attractions. Here are some of the must-visit places for the history hungry traveler.

1. Key West Lighthouse

You have to brave the 88 steps to climb to the observation deck of the Key West lighthouse. But the reward is definitely worth it with magnificent views of the tropical island and the water that surrounds it. Built in 1847 the lighthouse has navigated several ships around the treacherous coral reefs to the safety of the shore. Today, the Keeper’s Quarters and the tower itself have been refurbished and restored.

2. Key West Shipwreck Museum

More than 100 ships have met their untimely demise on the dangerously sharp coral reefs of Key West in the 19th century. Visit the Shipwreck Museum to see Key West in the days of yore, as a sea-town bustling with activity. The Museum also gives tourists a glimpse into Key West’s wrecking industry as well as the island’s 19th century lifestyle.

The Key West Shipwreck Museum

3. The Historic Seaport of Key West

The Historic Seaport of Key West abound the island’s rich history and culture. Since its inception over 200 years ago, this working seaport was once the heart of the island, with much of the commerce generated out of here.  The Seaport was used as a base for vessels used in coastal shipping, fisheries and other maritime trades. The Harbor Walk offers you a taste of Key West’s rich history and culture. You will discover how this working seaport was the focal point of the island’s cultural and economic life.

4. Alonzo & Berlin’s Lobster House

A&Bs is one of the oldest seafood joints in Key West and features a menu where everything from the ingredients, and seafood, to the prime steaks have been locally procured. Don’t be surprised to find the iconic Maine lobster on the menu, which is flown in especially from Boston. You can dine inside the restaurant which has floor-to-ceiling glass or outdoors on the scenic balcony. The Lobster House looks a bit like a riverboat from the old days and this just adds to its old-world charm.

A Lobster Tapas from A&B lobster house

5. The Audubon House and Tropical Gardens

Audubon House is a 19th century home that was built by Captain John Huling Geiger and named after world renowned naturalist John James Audubon who visited the Keys and Dry Tortugas in the year 1832. When he visited, he found 18 species of plants and birds in the Florida Keys and painted them. Audubon House has many 18th century antiques for public viewing. The gardens that surround the property are a sterling place for a serene late-afternoon stroll.

Audubon House and Gardens

Ten Interesting Facts about the Anhinga of the Everglades National Park

The Everglades National Park is home to some of the most unique types of wildlife, birds, and plants in the world that can be best viewed through an airboat tour. One special native bird of the Everglades National Park is the anhinga. This tropical water bird lives in the freshwater wetlands of the Everglades and Big Cypress National Preserve.

1. The anhinga is a wading bird that is found widely in the Everglades National Park. It is a darter that has a thin, long neck with a pointed bill. While they thrive in freshwater marshlands, they have also been known to survive in saltwater and brackish habitats as well.

2. Male anhingas are an inky black color with clusters of white or silver feathers on their wings. Females can be identified by their buff-tan neck. During mating season, a bright blue colored patch of skin has been known to surround the male’s blood-red eyes.

3. The anhinga is known as the water turkey or the snake-bird and is found pretty much all year round in parts of Florida. They can also be found south towards Argentina and from coastal sections of South Carolina, westwards to Texas and Mexico.

4. The anhinga feeds mostly on small fish, amphibians, young alligators, crayfish, snakes, and shrimp that they forage for in the marshy wetlands of the Everglades National Park.

5. Anhingas have been known to fish underwater. They spear their prey to catch them, they retract their necks to form an ‘S’ shape and dart it back to pierce their prey in the water. Once they spear their prey, the come ashore slap the fish around their bills to detach it, toss it into the air and swallow it down head first.

6. You are most likely to see an anhinga while on an airboat tour or taking a walk along the Tamiami trail. They can be found sunning themselves on the Big Cypress boardwalk too, with their wings stretched wide open.

7. Unlike other aquatic birds that have natural oil on their feathers, the anhingas have lower oil levels so that their buoyancy levels are reduced. The anhingas sink more easily as compared to other birds as the water floods into small spaces in their feathers.

8. Anhingas have been known to control the massive non-native catfish population in Big Cypress National Preserve by eating them. They’re called snake-birds die to their style of swimming. When they swim, their body sinks beneath the surface whereas only their neck and head stay above the water. At a quick glance, they look like water snakes. They mate during the month of February. They lay their eggs during the spring and the early summer months. They build their nests in trees that line the shoreline, which are about 15-20 feet tall.