Monday, September 08, 2008


Due to the approach of Tropical Storm Hanna on Friday, we cleared the office early at the Audubon Center at Francis Beidler Forest. Thankfully, there was little wind associated with the storm and therefore no boardwalk repairs waiting for us on Saturday. Unfortunately, there was also precious little rain associated with the storm. Our rain gauge at the nature center showed only 1" fell on site. The swamp remains rather dry and the skies continue to be clear.

Today, clearing began on three 2-acre parcels in the grassland restoration site near the US Hwy 15 and I-26 intersection. As we've previously written (entry 1 and 2), this restoration project will create perennial, warm-season grassland on 38 acres of previously-logged land. This grassland will be for the benefit of grassland bird species, specifically sparrows, buntings, bobwhite quail and other ground-nesting birds. Grassland habitat is diminished through conversion to agriculture, conversion to managed forest, and development.

Although it doesn't look pretty today, the rich smell of dark, turned earth indicated to us that the grassland ecosystem will thrive on this site.

Images by Mark Musselman

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