April 26, 1999
Dear SCAN Members,
If variety is the staff of life, then the 24 SCAN members who attended the weekend outing in April at the 18,000 acre Hobcaw Barony in Georgetown County had a rich feast. Saturday started with an early morning trip to the Pawley Island Beach where Ed Ruppert and Jennifer Frick pointed out many forms of sea life; we were treated as well to observing a large flock of White-winged scoters and numerous gannets diving into the ocean for their meals. Then we drove back to Hobcaw with its’ diverse mixture of habitats which yielded up a rich harvest as manifested by our flora/fauna list. The nature part of the outing was capped with a visit to the manor home of Bernard Baruch, a modest but large home, which has entertained many of the worlds’ great.
As if our cup wasn’t already running over, following a great sea-food dinner, Ed and Jennifer seined microscopic life forms from a tidal basin. We were then treated to an evenings’ entertainment watching copepods and various microscopic larvae do their thing under two stereo-microscopes. On Sunday, we again returned to Hobcaw to visit several marshes and a former rice field. The last SCAN’ers to turn the lights out on this great trip were rewarded by seeing a red cockaded woodpecker and a chicken turtle. To merely thank Ed and Jennifer for the tremendous effort they put in to make this trip a great success somehow seems to be entirely inadequate. So to them, we raise our glasses with the best vintage of mythical seawater wine imaginable in a grateful toast!
P.S. For the curious, Hobcaw is an Indian term meaning land between the waters; Barony refers to the large plot of land granted by the British King to a loyal subject in the seventeen hundreds.
Saturday, May 22, 1999 at 10:30 a.m.
WEBB WILDLIFE CENTER
If there was ever a SCAN destination with something for everyone, this one is it! Consisting of almost 6000 acres along the Savannah River, the Webb Center boasts an incredibly diverse array of habitats including long-leaf pine flatwoods, mixed hardwood forests, fields, ponds, and cypress-tupelo swamp. Dr. Richard Porcher calls it “one of the premier wildflower sites available to the public in the Lowcountry”, and it’s one of the best places in the state to observe rare or seldom-seen birds like Red-cockcaded Woodpecker, Bachman’s Sparrow, Indigo Bunting, Blue Grosbeak, Purple Gallinule, and Mississippi and Swallowtailed Kites. Among the sites we’ll visit is an active rookery with Little Blue Herons and Purple Gallinules, and a beautiful ox-bow lake surrounded by towering cypress trees. This could be an interesting trip for the reptile and amphibian enthusiast, too. If we’re lucky, we may we may hear the eerie and beautiful call of the Bird-voiced Treefrog. The die-hard herpetologists among us can hope to cross paths with the six-foot radio-transmitter-equipped Eastern Diamondback; the rest of us can hope not to!
On this trip we will be carpooling to at least two or three different sites. Be prepared to carry a lunch or snacks, and don’t forget the bug spray! We’ll meet at the usual time of 10:30, but come early if you’d like to spend some extra time birding. The restroom facilities are not open on weekends, so you’ll have to rough it. After the trip, anyone who’s interested can try a barbeque restaurant in the town of Estill.
From Columbia, the most direct route is to take US 321 south. After you pass the little towns of Estill and Scotia, you will come to Garnett, which is little more than a crossroads. Turn right onto Rd. 20. Follow this road just over 2 miles, and you will see the entrance to Webb on the left. Follow the entrance road to the signs for the office, lodge, etc. Go to the lodge (two-story house) and park in the lot beside it.
Members who come by way of I-95 can take the Coosawhatchie exit and follow SC 462 to US 321, then go north on US 321 to Garnett.