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Florida State Parks

USA Parks
Central East Region
Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge
Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge © Bill Boyer
State Road 402 (5 miles east of Titusville)
Titusville, Florida   32782
Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MINWR) headquarters is located five miles east of U.S. 1 in Titusville, Florida. The Refuge, which is an overlay of the John F. Kennedy Space Center, was established in August 1963 to provide a buffer zone for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the quest for space exploration. Approximately one half the Refuge's 140,000 acres consist of brackish estuaries and marshes. The remaining lands consist of coastal dunes, scrub oaks, pine forests and flatwoods, and palm and oak hammocks.

The coastal location of MINWR, with its seven distinct habitat types and position between the subtropic and temperate zones contribute to the Refuge's importance as a major wintering area for migratory birds. Over 500 species of wildlife inhabit the Refuge with 16 currently listed as federally threatened or endangered. Several wading bird rookeries, approximately 10 active bald eagle nests, numerous osprey nests, up to 400 manatees and an estimated 2,500 Florida scrub jays can be found on the Refuge.

The objectives of MINWR are to provide habitat for migratory birds, to protect endangered and threatened species, to provide habitat for natural wildlife diversity, and to provide opportunities for environmental education, interpretation, and compatible wildlife-oriented recreation. In addition, as part of a complex, MINWR administers Lake Wales Ridge and St. John's National Wildlife Refuges.
 Hiking Trailyes

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
September 28 real florida fantastic by steve england
found this place after visiting kennedy ran out off time,to see much but cant wait to go back next year. a must see if in florida. never seen so many spiders in one place.
April 21 A gem and a surprise
I came to Florida in March for the Shuttle launch and was looking for a non-theme park experience while I was there. Merritt Island was a great surprise! The abundance of flora and fauna was wonderful to see - especially liked the Black Point wildlife drive. Wonderful and worth additional trips.
March 12 Great way to spend the day! by smallchico
We didnt see the whole park but we did go on the 15 mile nature drive. I LOVED it! Being new to Florida it was a great chance for me to see a wide variety of plant and animal life in a natural setting. I am also an amateur photographer and this was a great chance to practice my skills. I plan to visit again soon.

Area Campgrounds
Whispering Pines MH
395 Cheney Highway Route 50
Titusville, FL

From I-95: take Exit 80 (SR 406, Garden St.) east through Titusville. Cross over the Indian River Lagoon. The Refuge entrance sign and information kiosk are located on the east side of the Indian River Lagoon. Refuge maps and brochures are available at the kiosk. Continue east for 4 miles to reach the visitor information center, located on the right side of the road.

From U.S. 1: follow U.S. 1 to Titusville. At the intersection with SR 406 (Garden St.), turn east. Cross over the Indian River Lagoon and follow the above directions.


Florida State Parks