Silver River (Florida)

The Silver River is a short spring-fed river located east of Ocala in Marion County, Florida. Fed by Silver Springs, it connects the springs to the Ocklawaha River, passing through a pristine woodland environment. The river was probably named for its silvery appearance.[1]

Silver River
Silver River.jpg
CountryUnited States
Physical characteristics
SourceSilver Springs
 • locationSilver Springs, Florida
 • coordinates29°12′57″N 82°03′10″W / 29.21583°N 82.05278°W / 29.21583; -82.05278
MouthOcklawaha River
 • location
Delks Bluff, Florida
 • coordinates
29°12′45″N 81°59′17″W / 29.21250°N 81.98806°W / 29.21250; -81.98806Coordinates: 29°12′45″N 81°59′17″W / 29.21250°N 81.98806°W / 29.21250; -81.98806
Length4.5 mi (7.2 km)

Geography and hydrologyEdit

The Silver River drains Silver Springs, located in the Silver Springs Nature Theme Park in Silver Springs, Florida approximately 6 miles (9.7 km) east of Ocala, Florida. The river flows east from the springs, being joined by an unnamed tributary creek from the north just east of the park, for approximately 5.4 miles (8.7 km) before joining the Ocklawaha River just south of the Bert Dosh Memorial Bridge.[2]


The Silver River flows through an undeveloped woodland just to the west of the Ocala National Forest; the water quality is considered excellent, and the river is regarded as being in pristine condition.[2]

Many types of turtles are found in the Silver River, while ospreys and anhingas breed along its banks.[3] Rhesus monkeys were released at Silver Springs in the 1930s, and became feral;[4] they remain present along the river's run and can be seen when traveling the river.[5] The Silver River is designated under the Outstanding Florida Waters program.[6]

History and recreationEdit

A feral rhesus macaque along the river

The first known human settlement in the Silver River area was by the Timucua people; Europeans arrived in the 1820s, with Fort King being established near the Silver Springs in 1827. The springs became a tourist attraction in the 1870s; the first glass-bottom boat was built to provide views of the springs in 1878.[2] The river steamer Metamora sank near the Silver River's mouth in 1903.[2]

The parks around the river's source, Silver Springs State Park and the historic Silver Springs attraction, are noted tourist destinations; the river itself is considered to be excellent for exploration by canoe and kayak.[3]


  1. ^ Frisaro, Freida Ratliff (Feb 21, 1988). "Indian heritage runs deep throughout Central Florida". Ocala Star-Banner. p. 63. Retrieved 6 June 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d Boning 2007, p.160.
  3. ^ a b Boning 2007, p.161.
  4. ^ Hiers, Fred (January 5, 2012). "Catching, selling Silver River monkeys is lucrative". The Gainesville Sun. Gainesville, FL. Retrieved 2012-09-12.
  5. ^ "Silver River has clear water, canoe trips...and monkeys?". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Pittsburgh, PA. October 15, 2000. p. F6. Retrieved 2012-09-12.
  6. ^ Ahlers, Karen (August 26, 2012). "Adena: Too many questions, too much at risk". Star-Banner. Ocala, FL. Retrieved 2012-09-12.


Boning, Charles R. (2007). Florida's Rivers. Sarasota, FL: Pineapple Press. ISBN 978-1-56164-400-1.

External linksEdit