Field Trips

Date: Saturday, March 3

Place: Bear Island and Donnelly Wildlife Management Areas, Colleton County

Meeting Spot: Bear Island WMA Main Entrance Time: 9:00 am Limit: 20 Leader: Buddy Campbell

Additional information: Within the boundaries of the ACE Basin lie the Bear Island and Donnelly Wildlife Management Areas which together, provide nearly 20,000 acres of forest, extensive wetland, and agricultural habitats. Birding at both of these locations is among the best in the state. This field trip will offer terrific opportunities to observe a number of waterfowl, waders, raptors, songbirds and more.

We’ll begin at Bear Island’s Mary’s House Pond where a variety of shorebirds, ducks, and waders along with white pelicans can often be found feeding and resting. American avocet and tundra swan are often seen throughout this season too. Depending upon conditions and recent sightings, we’ll decide how much time to spend at each location. This trip will include carpool driving and some walking on the sites. We will bird these two locations for approximately 4 hours.

We are fortunate to have Buddy Campbell leading this field trip for us. Buddy is a Lowcountry Master Naturalist who has been involved in a variety of local birding events and publications for many years, including leading trips for Audubon South Carolina and the Fripp Island Audubon Society. Fortunately for us, among his favorite birding spots are Bear Island and Donnelly! To insure the best birding for the group, we will want to limit the number of cars traveling through these properties. Please consider carpooling. Carpoolers should meet at the former Neo's Restaurant parking lot at Moss Creek Village by 7:00 am. The travel time from Hilton Head is a little over an hour and a half without stops.

Also note, there are no restroom facilities at Bear Island, but we will visit the restrooms at Donnelly by late morning. Directions and more information can be found at To sign up for this field trip, please contact Bob Speare at or 843-715-9772.