Turkey Creek is an oasis within the city of Palm Bay. It runs from the Melbourne-Tillman Dam north to the Indian River, approximately 3 miles. The creek is a “lazy river” most days requiring easy paddling. High water levels or wind can make the paddling a bit more challenging. Always check the weather prior to beginning any kayak trip. Wear your floatation vest, and bring a good hat, sunscreen, bug spray, and plenty of water. Pull-out areas with restrooms and/or picnic areas are identified on the detailed maps below. Be sure to look up, down, and listen during your trip! There is an abundant variety of birds in the trees along the creek, mammals on the banks, plus fish and reptiles. Please take only photos and good memories. Most importantly, have fun!!
Geography and History
Turkey Creek is a major tributary of the Indian River Lagoon. The creek mouth forms a bay surrounded by palms from which the city was named. The creek is fed by an extensive canal system covering 100 square miles of land, draining into the Tillman Dam. While the creek is normally slow-moving, it can become engorged after heavy rains and thus move swiftly.
Turkey Creek is a brackish water creek, whose natural brown coloring comes from tannins in the leaves of oak trees that have fallen in the water. Beneath the wet hammock along the banks of the creek is a unique geological rock stratum called the “Anastasia Formation”. Perched on this limestone rock is a bed of fossil bones over 250,000 years old.
Click the links below to access the self-guided kayaking routes and enjoy!
Turkey Creek Sanctuary is comprised of 133 acres of wonder, biodiversity and natural resources. The park is part of the Brevard County Environmentally Endangered Lands (EEL) Program and the East Florida Birding Trail. It was established in 1978 when the land was donated to the City of Palm Bay and the Florida Audubon Society by the General Development Corporation. All plants and animals are protected. No fishing is allowed on this stretch.
Approximately 2 hour round trip through the straight, wider section of the creek. This section goes by housing, several bays and ends at the Indian River. Keep an eye out for dolphin and manatee in the bays. Castaway Point is home to beautiful water birds and has a small beach.
Click below to download a PDF of the guided tours.
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