Snakes were what I saw the most of on my recent visit to Beidler Forest. I’m not a big fan, but have grown to appreciate their habits since moving to SC.
The positions they arrange themselves in are pretty interesting, including a little flare with the tail.
It was a partly cloudy day in the mid 70s (24-25C) and these three were in spots that were in and out of the sun.
Beidler Forest, SC
March 18, 2022
I don’t know why they call this a lake instead of a pond, but either way Goodson Lake is part of the amazing water flow that is known as Four Holes Swamp. On this mid-March day trees were leafing out but there wasn’t much bird or animal activity.
The Prothonotary Warblers have returned to my area. Often you hear them before seeing them, even with this brilliant yellow.
These images were taken at Beidler Forest which has many of the features these warblers like: tree cavities for nesting, damp forest floor, dense undergrowth and both standing and slow moving water.
As I was leaving for the day one final Prothonotary Warbler crossed my path and perched on an open, if dimly lit, branch for a few moments.
A Barred Owl pair with two fledged owlets has been seen regularly from the boardwalk at Beidler Forest. We spotted just this one youngster taking short flights in the limbs above us.
The owlet was curious about the humans passing on the boardwalk below him, not bothered by our presence. A school group of about twenty-five kids and chaperones had just passed and a few of their stragglers stopped with us to watch the chick.
The light was low and it was raining off and on as we made our way around the board walk over the swamp at Beidler Forest, a property managed by Audubon South Carolina. I heard a warbler calling way before I saw this bird and his mouthful of bugs.
I was quite surprised he was so close to the boardwalk. He moved to different branches a few times, keeping a tight grip on his bug collection. After a couple minutes he flew out of my sight.
Further on I spotted another Prothonotary Warbler bringing food to a nest in a Cypress Knee. It was even darker then and rain was about to fall in earnest. The image is not great but you can get an idea of where these warblers rear their young.
Both of these birds were banded, part of a research project to study their migration.
Beidler is the world’s largest virgin cypress-tupelo swamp forest — a pristine ecosystem untouched for millennia.
Audubon South Carolina