My wife Helga and I have been fortunate to live on the shores of the Indian River Lagoon for 43 years. We purchased a lot in 1973 on what is now called Dragon Point, at the convergence of the Banana and Indian River Lagoons. We moved into a newly constructed house with our eight-year-old daughter in 1974.
Our lot has a natural mangrove shoreline on the Banana River. We have always enjoyed the wildlife that comes to visit. Dolphins, pelicans and ospreys are seen nearby almost every day. Migratory birds frequent the mangroves seasonally. Otters visit occasionally and leave their smelly scat. A large variety of fish and other marine life can be found beneath the water’s surface.
We have watched the human population more than double on South Merritt Island and in the nearby barrier island communities. While the wildlife are clearly not as abundant today as they were in the seventies, we still live in a paradise for enjoying natural Florida. A pair of screech owls can be heard calling most evenings around sunset. Red-bellied woodpeckers have built a cavity in a neighbor’s palm tree, and they are raising their young.
A few years ago, our daughter Liz returned to live nearby with our now 16-year-old grandson Shaw. He spends many hours outside and often on the Lagoon in a kayak or small powerboat. Perhaps he too will be able to enjoy an Indian River Lagoon life.