*Weather Update: The forecast for tomorrow shows that there is a good chance of thunderstorms. Because coastal weather can be variable this time of year, we don't want to change plans yet, but be looking for an email at 6 p.m. with the updated agenda.
CAPE ROMAIN NEEDS OUR HELP
Hurricane Matthew came onshore and roared through Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge with the eye coming over the town of Awendaw. The storm was devastating to the South Carolina coastline, taking away the majority of the protective sand dunes along our beaches. In Cape Romain, there was significant damage to the outer islands, including the freshwater impoundments on Bulls Island. To make the necessary repairs, refuge management had to use general operating funds- and this exceeded what they needed to operate on a day-to-day basis.
As a result, the funded needed for the 2017 Turtle Conservation Project is lacking. To monitor, relocate nests, cage nests from predators and run this program, it takes a seasonal wildlife biologist and an incredible about of volunteers. They work tirelessly in the sun and sand to make sure that every nest is accounted for. Their work has paid off and in 2016 Cape Romain saw a record number of Loggerhead Sea Turtle nests-- over 2500! You can imagine the work that has to be done to facilitate this program.
Friends of Coastal South Carolina has organized a weekend with Patrick McMillan to help raise funds for this Cape Romain program. Patrick will be speaking at the Charleston Library Society on Saturday, June 24 from 5 to 7. This lecture will focus on the challenges of conservation and how we fit into the natural world. Following his lecture, enjoy cocktails and hors d'oeuvres and the opportunity to mingle with Patrick.
On Sunday, June 25, we'll continue the conversation by taking an expedition into Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge. The islands within the refuge are the most significants nesting spots for Loggerheads north of Florida. We'll take the ferry to Bulls Island and explore the island "safari-style" to allow us to see the island from maritime forest to beach. Patrick will lead the way and talk about this important habitat and the impact of the Sea Turtle Program in the refuge. There are two departure times for this adventure.
All proceeds raised from this 2-day event will be donated to the Turtle Conservation Project in Cape Romain. Please consider signing up for both events!
Saturday Evening Lecture
Charleston Library Society
Saturday, June 24 | 5-7 p.m.
(cocktails & hor d'oeuvres following lecture)
Sunday Bulls Island Tour
Garris Landing in Awendaw
Sunday, June 25
Two Departures (10 & 11:15)
ACTIVITY LEVEL FOR ISLAND TOUR
Participants will take the Bulls Island Ferry to the Bulls Island dock and explore the island "safari-style" using trucks and trailers outfitted with bench seating. It is suitable for most ages and activity levels.
If you have concerns due to limited mobility, please call our office at (843)884-7684.
WHAT TO WEAR TO BULLS ISLAND
Sun hat, closed-toe shoes and synthetic, long-sleeved shirt and pants are recommended.
WHAT TO BRING TO BULLS ISLAND
Drinking water, sunscreen, insect repellent
Boat Eco-tour, Island tour with Patrick McMillan
ABOUT THE SEA TURTLE PROGRAM
Each year, over 1000 nests are categorized, protected and monitored in Cape Romain NWR, making it the most significant nesting site for Loggerheads north of Florida. In 2016, a record 2500 nests were laid in the refuge! Find out more about the work being done at the Cape Romain website.
Emmy award-winning Patrick McMillan is the host and creator of Expeditions with Patrick McMillan. Exploring landscapes throughout North and South America, his adventures take viewers to exotic and unknown locales to expand their perspectives on our natural world. A naturalist, biologist and educator, Patrick is the director of the South Carolina Botanical Garden, Bob Campbell Geology Museum and the Clemson Experimental Forest.