Don’t be spooked by the new adventures! Join SIB for more fall fun. Note the evening golf course birding, October Big Day and several off island trips.
Beyond Our Backyard – Ft. Moultrie
When: Wednesday October 04, 2023 8:00 am -10:00 am
Location: Meet at SI real estate office to carpool (6:45 am) or meet us at the fort (1214 Middle St, Sullivan’s Island, SC. Park at Poe Avenue in the sand parking lot between Battery Jasper and Battery McCorkle)
Cost: Free for members, $10 per guest
Join us on a trip to Ft. Moultrie. This is a well known birding hotspot among birders and fall migration will be in full swing. We may see many migrant birds passing through. It has many different habitats, including meadow/field, forest and shoreline. We are fortunate to have Craig Watson lead this activity. Craig is a retired migratory bird biologist at U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and lives in Mt. Pleasant.
Ft. Moultrie is the first fort on Sullivan’s Island. It has been rebuilt three times since 1776 and played a significant role in the Civil War. Today, Ft. Moultrie has been restored to portray the major periods of its history. A visitor to the fort moves steadily backwards in time from the World War II harbor entrance control post to the site of the Palmetto-log fort of 1776. A tour of Ft. Moultrie will not be part of our birding activity, but if you drive there yourself, you are welcome to stay and also tour the fort. It is open 9:00 am-5:00 pm. You will need to go to the Visitor Center and purchase a $10 ticket. We will be birding the perimeter of the fort before opening hours.
Be sure to bring sunblock, bug spray, a hat, binoculars, camera and a scope, if you have one.
Please register no later than Monday, October 02, 2023. All registrants will receive a confirmation letter the day prior to the event.
Learning Together, Palmetto Lake
When: Monday, October 9, 2023, 7:30 am-10:00 am
Location: Meet at the pool end of The Lake House parking lot
Cost: Free for members, $10 for guests
Celebrate fall migration by walking and bird watching around Palmetto Lake located behind The Lake House! Join SIB in search of some warblers who are short term visitors on the island during the fall migration season. The path around Palmetto Lake is wheelchair navigable and for those who will be walking, it is flat and will be at a leisurely pace. We hope to see some of our resident warblers such as Yellow-throated Warbler, Pine Warbler, and the Black and White Warbler. In addition, it is highly likely that we will see a few American Redstarts, Yellow Warblers, and possibly Black-throated Blue Warbler, and the Common Yellow Throat. Naturally, there should be Bluebirds, Northern Cardinals, Carolina Wrens, Carolina Chickadees, Tufted Titmouse, different woodpeckers, and raptors in the area.
Bring your binoculars, hats, bug spray and a beverage of choice.
Please register no later than Saturday, October 7. All registrants will receive a confirmation letter on Sunday, the day prior to the trip.
October Movie, “Wild America – Season Two- Bird Watching”
(Episodes 3 and 4)
When: Tuesday, October 10, 2023 at 4:00 pm
Location: In person at Oyster Catcher Community Center (if there are at least five people) and virtually via Zoom
Birdwatching is one very popular way in which many people enjoy the wonder and fascination of our great American outdoors. More so than any other creatures, birds have captured the imagination of humans as they float on the wind, soar to great heights and make the world a more wonderful place.
Episode 3: Birds of Prey Symbols of noble power and unsurpassed freedom –Falcons, hawks and eagles still arouse in us a centuries-old mystique. From the tiny shrike to the majestic eagle, they come in all sizes, populate every habitat and are each specifically designed for the prey they hunt. Some of the most impressive animals on earth are these expert, legendary hunters — aristocrats of the air.
Episode 4: Call to Courtship – As spring unfolds, the sweet melodies of birds provide a welcome break from the stillness of winter. The trills and eye-catching displays of courting males actually serve a dual purpose — to intimidate rivals as well as to attract prospective mates. The song and dance rituals are all orchestrated toward a single goal — to ensure the most fit pass on genes for future generations.
October Big Day
When: Saturday, October 14, 2023, 7:30 am – 7:00 pm
Location: Various locations around Seabrook Island
Max: 10 at any location Cost: Free for members, $10 for non-members
Join us in participating in eBird’s October Big Day. The eBird site describes the event with “Wherever you are on October 14, take a few minutes to join the world of birding on October Big Day. Participate from anywhere—even home! By taking part in October Big Day you’re also celebrating Global Bird Weekend and World Migratory Bird Day. Be a part of the global team and help set a new record for October birding.”
On Seabrook Island, the event will involve walks at various locations throughout the day. The schedule below allows for individuals to sign up for a portion of the day if the whole day is not of interest. We request you register for all sections you will be attending so we know if we should wait for you at any individual location. You can participate in the “Bird my Backyard” to record your observations even if you are not on Seabrook Island.
We have included a “virtual” activity again this year where people can bird in the comfort of their own homes and share their findings with the group.
Bird my backyard – Bird your own property for as long as you want, as many times as you want throughout the day. Keep a list (in eBird or in a form we will provide) and share your findings with SIB. “Your own property” can be a golf course, a camp ground or an interstate highway….wherever you happen to see birds, share your observations.
North Beach (high tide 8:42 am), 7:30 am – 9:30 am
The group will walk the two miles to Captain Sam’s Inlet (tides permitting). Those unable to walk the entire distance may turn around at any time. The group will work together to identify those hard to distinguish plovers and sandpipers. The walk is scheduled around high tide so the birds will be clustered closer for easier viewing. We recommend you wear shoes that can get wet. Meet at the owners beach access parking lot at Boardwalk 1.
Maintenance Area, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Walk around the water treatment area to possibly see egrets, wood storks, and even fall migrating warblers. If time permits, we will also venture into the club boat / camper storage area in search of early arriving sparrows. This activity is limited to 10 people and requires signature of a release form for the water treatment facility.
Jenkins Point, 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm
We will be exploring the birds seen along Jenkins Point lagoons and streets, including ducks, wading birds and shorebirds. We will go from location to location via car or bike. Since this event can be primarily by car, it is appropriate for members with mobility issues. Meet at Jenkins Point Ct, the street after the first pond on the left.
Palmetto Lake, 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Join us to explore the birds around The Lake House. This is less than one mile of flat, paved walk around the lake. Recently, White Ibis, Cattle Egret, Little Blue Herons and Snowy Egrets have come in to roost in late afternoon so we hope they continue to provide a show. Meet at the equestrian end of The Lake House parking lot.
Equestrian Center, 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm (sunset, 6:48 pm)
Join us for happy hour at the equestrian center. Bring your drink / snacks of choice while we recap our day while observing the resident European Starlings, Eastern Bluebirds, plus many other species. Our plan is to bird from the comfort of our chairs with occasional “excursions” to a fence or tree to see a particular bird.
For all events, bring sun block, bug spray, a hat, water, snacks and binoculars.
Please register no later than Thursday, October 12, 2023. All registrants will receive a confirmation letter on Friday, October 13, 2023.
Learning Together on Crooked Oaks Golf Course
When: Monday, October 16, 2023 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm *** Note – This will be an afternoon event.
Location: Meet at The Island House (golf course parking lot next to Spinnaker beach houses) for ride along the golf course in golf carts
Max: 24 (If all seats in golf carts are used)
Cost: Free for members; $10 donation for guests – Priority will be given to prior waitlisted and members
The Seabrook Island Club closes one course a day, each week and allows SIB to use golf carts to travel the course to bird. Join us for our first afternoon of birding by riding in golf carts for at least 9-holes on Crooked Oaks golf course. We expect to see a large variety of birds including Egrets, Herons and birds of prey. We will also see and hear some of the smaller birds like Tufted Titmice, Eastern Bluebirds, Northern Cardinals, Carolina Wrens and some of the many warbler species. Since it is fall, we can also expect to see Eastern Phoebes, Northern Flickers, Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers, Belted Kingfishers, Double-crested Cormorants, Bald Eagles, and more!
As always, be sure to bring your binoculars/cameras, hats and sunscreen. Water will be provided.
Please register no later than Friday prior to the trip. All registrants will receive a confirmation letter on the Sunday, the day prior to the trip. If you need to cancel, please let us know so we can invite people on the waitlist to attend.
Beyond Our Backyard – College of Charleston’s Stono Preserve
When: Thursday, October 19, 2023, 7:30 am – 2:30 pm
Location: Meet at Seabrook Island real estate to carpool at 6:30 am. Meet at Publix on Main Road and Hwy 17 at 7:05 am to carpool to Stono Preserve
Cost: Free for members; $10 donation for guests
Join SIB to bird at the Stono Preserve of the College of Charleston. This beautiful 981-acre property along the Stono River and the Intracoastal Waterway provides a natural, outdoor laboratory for a variety of disciplines at the College of Charleston. For more information on this property, be sure to visit the link above. In the morning, we will walk along lowland forest bordering the Stono River, passing open marsh and both brackish and freshwater ponds; depending on time, we may also walk along open fields. We should see a variety of wading and shorebirds (depending on water depth in the brackish pond), raptors (Osprey and Bald Eagles both nest on the site; American Kestrels are also common and both Great-horned and Barred Owls have been spotted during the day by following the commotion of crow and jays), woodpeckers (the site hosts all SC species except the red-cockaded) and wintering warblers and sparrows.
As always, be sure to bring your binoculars/cameras, hats, sunscreen and bug spray. Bring plenty to drink and a picnic lunch to eat on the property. There is water on the property but we have been advised that it may not taste very good because the pipes are infrequently in use. We have also been warned that the Dixie Plantation Road leading to the site is a dirt road that may not be in great shape so drive with caution. We will have access to bathroom facilities at the beginning of our tour and during lunch.
Please register no later than Tuesday, October 17, 2023. All registrants will receive a confirmation letter the day prior to the event.
Backyard Birding at Inlet Cove on Kiawah
When: Monday, October 23, 2023, 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Location: Sundown Bend/ Inlet Cove cabana and dock
Cost: Free for members; $10 donation for guests
Join SIB to bird at the home of Paula Feldman on Kiawah. She has a cabana and a dock that she can reserve for our backyard birding activity. We plan on making this a sunset birding event. Please bring a snack and drink of your choice. Birders from beginners to advanced will enjoy the variety of birds found at this great spot on Kiawah. Paula has seen dolphins stranding and a large variety of birds. No need for a Kiawah gate pass. You will turn right before the gate.
As always, be sure to bring your binoculars/cameras, hats and sunscreen. Bring plenty to drink and a snack if desired.
Please register no later than October 20. All registrants will receive a confirmation letter on October 22, the day prior to the trip. If you need to cancel, please let us know so we can invite people on the waitlist to attend.
Beyond Our Backyard-Bear Island and Donnelly WMA
When: Sunday, October 29, 2023, 6:00 am– 4:00 pm (sunrise, 7:34 am)
Location: Meet at SI real estate office to carpool.
Cost: Free for members, $10 for guests
If you have never been to Bear Island Wildlife Management Area (WMA) or to Donnelly WMA, you won’t want to miss this opportunity. It’s well worth the 60-mile one-way trip! Part of the ACE Basin, this area is the perfect habitat for birds with ponds, rivers, salt marsh, freshwater marsh, mudflats mixed pine-hardwood forest and farmland. Most of the birding is done by car with stops to get out and take short walks for viewing. Bear Island closes for hunting from November 1 through February 9 each year, so this is the last chance to visit before spring. We hope the winter waterfowl will have returned, including the Tundra Swan. Each person should bring their own lunch, snacks and beverages, as there are no restaurants in the area. Also, be sure to bring sunblock, bug spray, a hat, binoculars, camera and a scope if you have one.
Please register no later than Thursday, October 26, 2023. All registrants will receive a confirmation letter the day prior to the event. Please let us know if you need to cancel.
-Submitted by SIB
(Image credit: Wild America)