The Loxahatchee Slough Natural Area is the largest and most biologically diverse natural area managed by Palm Beach County. It contains the historic headwaters of the Loxahatchee Wild and Scenic River and has nine native Florida ecosystems: mesic flatwoods, wet flatwoods, mesic hammock, hydric hammock, wet prairie, depression marsh, slough marsh, strand swamp, and dome swamp.
Palm Beach County acquired 10,391 acres of the site in 1996 and 2,190 acres during the period 2000-2007. The County also leases 257 acres from the South Florida Water Management District and 3 acres from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for management purposes. Extensive restoration activities have been conducted on the site to restore areas impacted by overdrainage, agricultural uses, and invasion of nonnative plant species. This work included mechanical removal of invasive nonnative vegetation, filling of drainage ditches and shell mining pits, and replacement of culverts leading to the C-18 Canal.
This natural area is part of the Northeast Everglades Natural Area. Palm Beach County manages the site with the assistance of the City of Palm Beach Gardens. The Florida Trail Association maintains the 4.5-mile segment of the Ocean to Lake Trail (hiking only) that passes through the natural area.
Location: North and south of PGA Boulevard, approximately 2.2 miles west of Florida’s Turnpike, in Palm Beach Gardens. Most of the natural area is located north of PGA Boulevard, east and west of the main channel of the C-18 Canal. A smaller tract is located between PGA Boulevard and the Bee Line Highway and a third tract is located between the Bee Line Highway and Northlake Boulevard. For Additional information on this Natural Area.