|Field trip descriptions||
Join the CBC in Santee
|Map of meeting and field trip locations.||
as SC Hosts Fall Meeting!
By Marion Clark
Santee in September! What could be better than a fall weekend in the lake country of South Carolina? A fall weekend in the lake country with a hundred of your closest CBC friends!
The 2007 fall meeting of the Carolina Bird Club is scheduled for 28–30 September in Santee, SC. Santee is easily accessed just off I-95 on the south shore of Lake Marion, the largest reservoir in the Carolinas. Meeting headquarters is at the gracious, landmark Clark's Inn, 114 Bradford Boulevard (Exit 98/SC 6 off I-95), in the heart of this Lowcountry resort community. Registration is in the Santee Room, a wonderful venue in which small meetings can be held. Clark's has reserved for the CBC a block of 50 rooms in the annex by the swimming pool. The group rate is $52 per room per night, and you won't believe the ambience! Cut-off date for reservations at the special CBC rate is August 31. Rooms may be available after the 31st, but would be at the prevailing rate. Call 800-531-9658 for reservations at Clark's Inn.
Meals may be eaten at Clark's Restaurant, Santee's finest. However, because of our space requirements, both evening gatherings will be across the street at the Quality Inn & Suites (803-854-2121). A three-entree dinner buffet is planned there for 6:00 p.m. Saturday night at a cost of $19.14 per person with tax and gratuity included, payable with your CBC registration. A cash bar will be available for those wishing to unwind with a cocktail, wine or beer after a great day of birding. For other meals, there are plenty of restaurants in town, including Lone Star Barbeque & Mercantile, selected as #1 in South Carolina for "downhome cooking" by the Columbia State newspaper.
In addition to Clark's & Quality Inns, most major hotel chains are represented in Santee, but are not as close.
Non-birding companions will enjoy fishing, golf, historic touring and outlet shopping. Information on these and other local attractions can be obtained from the hotel front desk, or for your advance planning, check out the offerings at www.santeetourism.com, the official website of Santee's Office of Tourism.
A detailed description of field trips offered is provided elsewhere in this issue. Suffice it to say here that Santee National Wildlife Refuge, just across the lake, is on everybody's Top Ten Birding Hotspots in the Palmetto State. Elliott's Landing, where the first South Carolina and northernmost record Snail Kite has been this summer, is likewise on the north shore. Biedler Forest National Audubon Sanctuary, Orangeburg Sod Farms, Congaree National Park and Santee State Park are within an hour's drive. Bear Island on the ACE Basin National Wildlife is a bit farther, but usually worth the trouble, for those who are willing drive some more. All of these sites are excellent for fall migrants. See you in Santee 28–30 September!
We are most fortunate to have Laurel Barnhill, bird conservation coordinator with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR), speak Friday night September 28th on the work of the Painted Bunting Observation Team of the Carolinas, in which project she collaborates with Jamie Rotenberg of UNC-Wilmington. Laurel came to South Carolina in 2005 from a similar position in Arkansas, where she was heavily involved in the Ivory-billed Woodpecker search.
On Saturday the 29th, Laurel's predecessor in the SCDNR and immediate past South Carolina Vice-president of the CBC, John Cely, will present "Birds of Ecuador" from his fantastic, "Enduro Birding" trip to South America last winter (419 species!). John's legacy in South Carolina is the recovery of the Swallow-tailed Kite and Red-cockaded Woodpecker populations in this state. In retirement he is working with the Congaree Land Trust to save wildlife in the Congaree/Wateree/Upper Santee Basin (COWASEE), which includes most of our field trip sites at this meeting.