Thursday, June 19, 2008

Owl Prowl

After spending the day learning how to create fantastic maps in ArcMap using any data imaginable, we headed to the Congaree National Park for an owl prowl. We host a monthly nightwalk at the Audubon Center at Francis Beidler Forest, but we've never been in the Congaree National Park after hours.

Ranger Fran met us at the nature center and gave us the history of the Congaree National Park, including that the land was once owned by Francis Beidler. Along the way, we talked about the habitat, including the flooding that occurs each year and nurishes the swamp unlike what occurs in the nutrient-poor Four Holes Swamp. We saw a Marbled Orbweaver dining on an unknown beetle, saw an Eastern Cottonmouth resting on a log in a creek, heard a Barred Owl comment on Ranger Fran's call, heard a White-tailed Deer snort its displeasure at our disruption, and saw fireflies begin to synchronize their flashing.

There are plenty of similarities and differences between Franics Beidler Forest and the Congaree National Park. We enjoyed the visit, but we're looking forward to returning home!

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