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#07-257 September 10, 2007

Public event series continues with four September events

The fall Public Event Series continues in September with four opportunities for the public to learn about happenings at the Marine Resources Division, the importance of conservation and the significance of historical preservation in the Lowcountry.

On Thursday, Sept. 13, the S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will continue with event 10, a Coastal Native Americans lecture led by representatives from the Edisto and Varner Town Etiwan Native American Indian tribes. The event, hosted at the Edisto Interpretive Center on Edisto Island, will focus on the customs and culture that continue to influence the fragile balance between humans and the surrounding landscape. Prior to the lecture, participants will have an opportunity to scope the remnants of a Native American shell midden, dating back more than 4,000 years old.

A Barrier Island Beachcombing field experience will be hosted on Wednesday, Sept. 19 at Folly Beach. DNR biologists will lead the outing, which will feature a discussion of barrier island dynamics, specifically the shifting of the islands that occurs through erosion and accretion. Participants of the field trip will look at dune structure and function, plant ecology and shell identification on a local barrier island.

Event 12, Birding in the Headwaters of the Ashepoo, Combahee and Edisto (ACE) Basin, will be offered Monday, Sept. 24 at Francis Beidler Forest Sanctuary. This field event will lead participants through the Four Holes Swamp watershed. Audubon South Carolina has generously agreed to provide participants with a guided tour along its 1.75-mile boardwalk at the Francis Beidler Sanctuary, which provides excellent opportunities for viewing wildlife. Resident birds, such as white ibis, barred owl and red-shouldered hawk are a few species likely to be seen. Audubon South Carolina is a non-profit organization that works to protect and conserve birds and their habitat throughout the state. Like all other offerings in the Public Event Series, there is no cost for the field trip, however a donation to Audubon South Carolina to help its conservation efforts is appreciated.

The last event offered this month, a lecture on South Carolina’s Striped Bass Fishery, will be hosted on Thursday, Sept. 27 at the DNR auditorium on James Island. The informative lecture, hosted by DNR fisheries biologists, will inform participants about the fish hatchery at the DNR’s Bonneau facility, the species’ life history, conservation of striped bass, efforts towards their sustainability for future generations, and the recreational fishery.

All events are free to the public and pre-registration is required to participate in the DNR’s Public Event Series’ opportunities. To sign-up for any of the events, contact DNR Public Event Series Coordinator Kim Counts at (843) 953-9354, or CountsK@dnr.sc.gov.

The Public Event Series, since its inception earlier this year, has offered nine educational programs and hosted more than 400 participants statewide. Counts said, "The pilot round of programs offered with the Public Event Series has certainly met our expectations and has provided momentum to continue offering these types of educational experiences to the public again this fall." Participants in the initial events provided important and positive feedback, as well as ideas for topics that will be incorporated into the fall Series. Following the September events, the Series will continue with opportunities during the month of October, and interested participants are encouraged to stay tuned for details of upcoming events.

DNR protects and manages South Carolina’s natural resources by making wise and balanced decisions for the benefit of the state’s natural resources and its people.
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