January 1996

January 15, 1996

Dear SCAN Members,

Happy New Year to you all, with hopes for another year of informative and pleasurable forays into the nooks and crannies of South Carolina.

Twenty people took the early boat to Bull’s Island (Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge in Charleston County) on December 9. Contrary to weather predictions, there was neither wind nor rain, but we were restricted to the main cross-island trail and the beach because of bow-hunters on the island. Nevertheless, there was plenty to see: lots of birds, some flowers even in December, and beach animals. Julie Finlayson showed us how to detect live sand dollars (properly called “Keyhole Urchins”) hiding under the wet sand, and we carefully dug up a few, noticed their movements, and replaced them. Also we saw sections of “sand collars”, circular masses of sand in a gelatinous matrix, which Moon Snails produce to protect their eggs. Tracks of the red wolves which inhabit the island were unmistakable. (The adult wolves currently on the island are zoo-raised animals which were released there several years ago. Their wild offspring will eventually be released in other areas in an effort to restore this species, which had been extirpated from its former range throughout the Southeast. A number of Bull’s Island-born wolves have already been released on a refuge in North Carolina.) During our return trip in the afternoon the tide was low and shorebirds much in evidence. Thanks to Regional Director Alex Ciegler for arranging this rewarding trip.


Our next meeting will be the only planned indoor meeting of the year on Saturday, January 27, in the Vista Room of the S. C. State Museum in Columbia (see map.) When you arrive, enter the regular door to the museum and tell the ticket-seller that you are with SCAN; you will not be charged an entrance fee. Doors will open at 9:15 a.m. for registration, socializing, and viewing member exhibits. The formal meeting will begin at 10:00. Keynote speaker will be Dr. James L. Knight, Assistant Curator of Natural History at the State Museum, speaking on “Cretaceous Fauna of North and South Carolina.” His subject includes dinosaurs! We’ll break for lunch at nearby eating places of your choice, and return for slides recapping the year’s trips, a preview of next year’s trips, and the business meeting. Guests are welcome.

PARTY: After the Annual Meeting concludes, everyone is invited to an open-house at Jan & Alex Ciegler’s. Food and drink will be provided; bring your own entertainment! Maps will be available at the meeting.

SLIDES: This is the last call for slides to be shown at the Annual Meeting. We especially need slides from some of the spring field trips, when rainy weather limited the activity of our usual camera buffs. Send your slides to Lynn Smith, and please call her ASAP to let her know you are sending them, since she will be in the final stages of preparation for the slide show. Lynn’s address is 407 Ridgecrest Dr., Camden, SC 29020 (phone: 803-432-1504.) PLEASE read your previous newsletters for instructions on labeling your slides!

EXHIBITS: Tables will be available as usual at the Annual Meeting for member exhibits. We’ve noticed that fewer members have been contributing to the exhibits in recent years, so let’s try to change that this year. Please bring new books or helpful articles you might have acquired, picture scrapbooks, artwork, any interesting natural objects you have collected, or anything at all you think your fellow naturalists might enjoy sharing.

DUES: Dues for 1996 are payable now. Avoid the lines at the Annual Meeting — send your check now (payable to SCAN) to:
P. O. Box 5651
Columbia, SC 29250

Note that dues have gone up. Dues for a single person are now $12.00, plus $5.00 for each additional person sharing a newsletter. Please destroy any old membership applications with the old rates. New applications for prospective members will be available at the Annual Meeting.

ELECTION OF OFFICERS: One person was inadvertently omitted from the slate of officers proposed by the nominating committee which was published in last month’s newsletter:
Virginia Winn Historian
You may make additional nominations from the floor at the meeting, but please obtain consent from those nominees before the meeting.

XERCES SOCIETY: The Xerces Society is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to invertebrates and the preservation of critical biosystems worldwide. Membership costs $25.00 a year, tax deductable, and include two issues a year of “Wings”. To join, send dues to Xerces Society, 4828 SE Hawthorne Boulevard, Portland, OR 97215.
See you at the Annual Meeting!
Your President,
Jan Ciegler