Sunday, August 24, 2014

Wild, wildlife in SC

It’s become a family tradition to head to Edisto Island SC each summer for a little R & R at Edisto Beach State Park.  One of our favorite side-trips is visiting Bulls Island, a barrier island in the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge.  As I’ve reported in past posts, every year we enjoy taking the Bulls Island Ferry across the estuary to enjoy a day of solitude and beachcombing in this spectacular wilderness area.  edisto54 (yup, that’s us on a wonderfully empty beach)  On the way, the team from Coastal Expeditions always provides a fun and informative presentation about what we might find while on the island, including the occasional blue crab.  edisto60 Our trip to the island once again didn’t disappoint!  We especially enjoyed a few exciting wildlife encounters.  We saw plenty of crabs, including the blue crab, stone crab edisto61, and even the sometimes elusive ghost crab edisto31!  Since we hit the boneyard at low tide, we saw plenty of sand dollars edisto42.  In case you’re not familiar with sand dollars, they’re the skeletons of a small, flat, burrowing animal that’s related to sea stars.  Here’s a neat video showing the living sand dollars:  Bulls Island has plenty of beach life, but there’s also great wildlife in the interior of the island.  Thanks to the helpful Coastal Expeditions staff, I found trails to investigate other parts of the island.  On a previous visit, I saw a beautiful buck bounding by the trail.  This time, I saw white ibex (photo credit: and the tiny, colorful Gulf Fritillary butterfly edisto57.  And just to add a little excitement to our trip, an alligator paid our ferry a visit (with a pelican adding scenic beauty!)  edisto59  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this is a green getaway that you shouldn’t miss if you’re ever in the Charleston SC area.  Be sure to visit the Coastal Expeditions website for details on this and other specialty trips.  (Important note: our first visit to Bulls Island was definitely “buggier” than other years, and I kidded about it in a previous post. It’s not always so buggy – this year wasn’t bad at all!)

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