Monday, January 11, 2010

Prescribed Burning

Late winter is the traditional time to do southern pine woods prescribed burning. Bellow are two links shedding more light on this practice and some of the benefits and concerns:

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Bottlenose Dolphins

Many people want to see and understand dolphins. The bottlenose dolphin is one of the most closely studied cetaceans in the world. As such there are many reputable sources of information about dolphins online. Here are a few:
For South Carolina and Hilton Head specific information we can turn to this excellent blog post by Hele Mitcheson of England who came to the May River area to take part in dolphin research.

The book The Dolphins Of Hilton Head by Cara Gubbins describes the unique population of dolphins in our area. Selected pages can be viewed on google books.
Finally dolphins and other marine mammals truly capture peoples' attention and imagination and show up in news reports frequently. Check out this news feed from as well as Google News.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hilton Head History

A Brief History of Hilton Head Island is indeed brief.
The Hilton Head Island History Timeline does a good job of breaking the island's history into distinct eras.
Beaufort County Library provides a HHI history FAQ (more of a glossary really).
This more narrative approach to Island history draws from the excellent book "The Sands Of Time: A History of Hilton Head Island"

For the golf enthusiast Charles Fraser - Hilton Head Golf History may be interesting.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Interactive Tour of a SC Salt Marsh

OK we know the best way to have a real interactive experience of a salt marsh is to catch a favorable tide and get out there in your kayak. And those of us who have spent much time in this unique ecosystem know it is a marvelous place, seemingly living and breathing with all its birds, fish, crabs, oysters and even mud.
Here is a fun and informative virtual tour of a South Carolina Salt Marsh courtesy of Clemson University. The many links and photos makes it sort of fun and interactive and don't forget to scroll down when reading the text.

SC Life: The Salt Marsh
Questions (pdf)
Answers (pdf)

If you are having fun with this sort of thing be sure to visit The Estuary, Charleston SC and The Three Rivers, Columbia SC, all from

Kayaking Safety

This first post is appropriately about safety, and no one would argue the saying "safety first". When the weather is pleasant and things become common-place the danger of complacency must be avoided. Everyone knows they should always wear a seat belt in an automobile but if you have ever forgotten to buckle up you know how easy it is to fall into the trap that the comfort of familiarity can bring. No one plans to have a car accident just as no one plans to capsize on a kayaking trip yet the unforeseen can happen to even the best driver and the best paddlers. That is why it is important to know the rules and procedures of kayaking safely and to review those instructions frequently.
The AKT Expert Center website provides what amounts to a complete online guide to kayaking, a html ebook covering nearly all aspects of sea kayaking. The expert center covers information on handling a kayak on the water, equipment, navigation, and most importantly as far as this post is concerned - safety.
Here is a page with Boaters' Navigational Rules for Paddlers, a slightly tongue-in-cheek reminder against hubris while you are out sharing the water with boats of all sizes.

AKT Expert Center - best practices for kayaking