Blackbeard’s Ranch is in southwest Florida, just east of sandy beaches and high rises on the gulf coast of Florida; it is one of the last large intact cow operations in a rapidly changing region.
Mike Galinski purchased the ranch from the R.E. Mason Estate of Sarasota in 2014. The name was changed to Blackbeard’s Ranch recognizing the pirate era of old Florida when pirate ships would come into Charlotte Harbor and Sarasota bay to get fresh water and replenish supplies for the crews. There are many stories of pirates moving inland by rivers, including the Myakka River. In the late 1800s and early 1900s there were attempts to locate the treasure that pirates had carried upriver to cache. The stories told by Indian tribes of pirates inland stirred the gold fever of finding doubloons and booty. Blackbeard’s Ranch was one of those places rumored to have buried treasure. Mike Galinski and Managing Partner Jim Strickland knew that Blackbeard’s was a special place; they have a vision for the ranch, not because of the treasure stories but because of the natural beauty of the dry prairies, maiden-cane marshes, live oak hammocks, cabbage islands and longleaf pine savannas. The diversity of the landscape makes Blackbeard’s an ideal cattle ranch. The headwaters of Deer Prairie Slough and adjoining wetlands are now a permanent conservation area, storing and cleaning water for people downstream. The vision for Blackbeard’s is also recognizing the people who loved and lived in old wild Florida. A Seminole Chickee at ranch headquarters is a meeting spot and all buildings reflect the Florida cracker style architecture of old.
Our land stewardship ethic guides us; we manage our land to ensure high quality habitat for wildlife while running a productive cattle operation. While running a cow-calf operation is our primary focus, we have also diversified into developing lines of other delicious products fresh from the ranch