Coastal Master Naturalists...

Oyster Reef Construction Volunteer Opportunities ~ June 2017

Come get muddy with SC Aquarium as they work with DNR South Carolina Oyster Restoration & Enhancement (SCORE) to build the aquarium’s second artificial oyster reef.  This will restore the habitat for fishes, crabs, shrimp, and turtles, and help buffer the shoreline against erosion and rising tides. The dates that still had opening are as follows…..

  • Monday June 19: 8:30 am – 12:30 pm
  • Tuesday June 20: 9:30 am – 1:30 pm
  • Wednesday June 21: 10:30 am – 2:30 pm

The plan is to meet at the Wappoo Cut Boat Ramp, Folly Road Blvd. Located under the Folly Road drawbridge in the West Ashley area of Charleston, SC

What to bring/wear:  water to drink, sunscreen, clothes that can get wet and dirty and are appropriate to the weather, closed toed shoes that protect you from oyster shell (tennis shoes and work boots are appropriate; absolutely no flip flops, water shoes, or other sandals that will come off in the pluffmud or expose your feet to very sharp oyster shell); a towel or change of shoes to clean up prior to getting back into your car.

What to know:

  • Boats will load and depart from the Wappoo Cut Boat Ramp promptly at the start of each day. A 5-10 minute boat ride will transport you to and from to the build site. Return times are approximate.
  • Each volunteer should make his or her own arrangements to be at the Wappoo Cut Boat Ramp on Folly Rd. in time for loading.
  • 7th grade and older only, please.
  • Volunteers must be comfortable walking on uneven ground (oyster shell, pluffmud) and capable of lifting ~20 lbs. There will be walking boards to stand on in some places since the shoreline may be very soft.
  • You will get very dirty and most likely wet to some degree – your feet will definitely get covered in mud and seawater.
  • We will begin each day by loading 350 bags of oyster shell at Wappoo Cut Boat Ramp into a skiff for transport to the build site.
  • The builds will last 2.5-3 hours.
  • We need at least 10 people each day and can accommodate many, many more.
  • The build will only be cancelled for severe weather. Please be aware of the elements and dress appropriately.  Please provide a contact number so we can notify you in the event of cancellation.

To RSVP:

Please send your name, date you would like to volunteer, and a contact number to Rachel Kalisperis rkalisperis@scaquarium.org or 843-579-8610

Another option is to join Charleston Waterkeeper & SCDNR for later stages of this reef construction! They will meet at the Wappoo Cut Boat Landing on June 23 at 12:30 PM. All materials are provided, including gloves, eye protection, water, gatorade, bug spray, and sunscreen. Please wear clothes you don’t mind getting dirty and close-toed shoes. Be eco-friendly and bring your reusable water bottle to refill! Sign up to volunteer online at http://charlestonwater.org/volunteer-job-calendar/

Bird Banding Volunteer Opportunities with Audubon SC ~ June /July 2017

Audubon South Carolina has started a new bird banding project at the Francis Beidler Forest being initiated this spring/summer. They will be running a bird banding station as part of the MAPS program – Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship – which is a national initiative run through the Institute for Bird Populations. They will be banding in the forested habitat behind the barn at Beidler, not far from the visitor center, in the same area where past Audubon employees have done banding work. They are interested to learn what species are using this habitat; from past projects, and know that many fledglings (including those of Prothonotary Warblers) and some rare species (e.g. – Swainson’s Warbler) have been found in this area.

A MAPS banding station only requires nine banding days throughout the summer, spread fairly evenly throughout June and July. They are seeking volunteers to help with this project; this is a great way to learn more about birds and bird banding by experiencing the process up close. A typical MAPS day starts around 5:15 a.m. and runs through noon, though volunteers could arrive any time between start time and 9:00 a.m. If interested, be prepared for heat, biting insects, a good amount of walking and the possibility of encountering snakes. Participants will need to bring food, plenty of water, and appropriate footwear. Our setup area is arranged so that we are never far from our vehicles during the course of the morning, so volunteers won’t need to carry everything with them throughout the day.

For questions, or to be added to our list of volunteers for this project, please contact Matt Johnson at mgjohnson@audubon.org .

SC Breeding Bird Survey Route Volunteers Needed!

Hello Bird Enthusiasts!

As SC state coordinator for the Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) I’d like to send a call out to see if any of you are interested in volunteering to run one or more available BBS routes. We have several vacant routes in SC-13 in the Southeastern coastal plain and 4 in the Piedmont. A map of available routes and information about the BBS can be found here https://www.pwrc.usgs.gov/bbs/RouteMap/Map.cfm#.

For anyone not familiar with the BBS, each route consists of 50 three-minute stops at 0.5 mile intervals along a 24.5 mile route. All the stops are roadside. Each route is conducted once a year between mid May to late June. The survey starts 30 minutes before sunrise and is typically finished in about 4 hours. Volunteers need to be able to identify all the anticipated breeding bird species in the area by sight and sound; most birds detected will only be by their vocalizations. The BBS prefers if volunteers are willing to commit to running a route for at least 3 years when possible.

If you are interested in volunteering, or have any additional questions, please let me know.

Thanks!

Amy Tegeler ~ SCDNR Bird Conservation Coordinator

SC BBS Coordinator 803-521-2119 TegelerA@dnr.sc.gov

Photo by Keith McCullough

CCPRC’s Education Team has a need for beach volunteers in May!

Charleston County Park’s Education Department has a need for volunteers on the following days:

  • May 15, 9:30-12:30 at Folly Beach County Park
  • May 22, 11-1:30 at Beachwalker County Park
  • May 25, 9:00-12:00 at Folly Beach County Park

The beach program volunteer will assist in the implementation of marine science school field trips.  This may include, but is not limited to: setting up for beach programs, pulling seine nets in the surf zone, assisting in the teaching of children, cleaning up after programs, and assisting in the maintenance of beach program supplies.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Knowledge of local marine fish and invertebrates
  • Knowledge of coastal processes
  • Knowledge of local flora found on South Carolina Barrier Islands
  • Ability to work with large groups of school children
  • Ability to function outdoors in a wide range of weather conditions
  • Ability to make competent decisions
  • Ability to provide excellent customer service to our park visitors
  • Ability to follow instructions effectively and work in a responsible and competent manner
  • Ability to establish and maintain harmonious relationships

If interested, please email Beth Burkett at bburkett@ccprc.com to sign up. Volunteers will be asked to register with the Park’s volunteer system at http://www.ccprc.com/1655/Volunteer.

SCDNR is seeking more volunteers this week ~ May 8th -May 13th!

The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources is seeking more help to post bird nesting signs on Deveaux Bank Seabird Sanctuary near Seabrook Island and Botany Bay this Monday, May 8. They will boat to the island from Rockville in the morning and will need help carrying posts, using a drill to put signs up to protect bird nests. If you are capable and interested please email Felicia Sanders at SandersF@dnr.sc.gov and let her know you are available. Then Felicia will contact you.

Red knot trapping (round 2)

This Thursday (May 11) through Saturday (May 13)  SCDNR will attempt to capture red knots at Deveaux Bank as they feed on horseshoe crab eggs. If they are able to trap, they need help setting up nets, carrying gear and if successful banding red knots. Trapping attempts are very long days so you need to be available all day starting early in the morning. This will include boating to the site.

If you are capable and interested please email Felicia at SandersF@dnr.sc.gov and let her know what day(s) you are available. Then Felicia will be in touch as plans finalize.

Volunteer to help trap Red Knots (Potential) ~ April 28th -May 2nd

Friday (April 28th ) through Tuesday (May 2nd) tides are high enough to trap red knots. SC Department of Natural Resources are not certain that they will find an ideal site, but wanted to solicit help in case they do. Knots are concentrated at Captain Sam’s inlet so we will probably trap at Kiawah, Seabrook or Deveaux Bank. If they are able to trap, they will need help setting up nets, carrying gear and if successful – banding red knots. Trapping attempts are very long days so you need to be available all day, starting early in the morning. If you are interested please email SandersF@dnr.sc.gov and let her know what day you are available. Felicia will be in touch if they find an ideal trapping site.

Felicia Sanders / Wildlife Biologist with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources
www.dnr.sc.gov/wildlife/species/coastalbirds/

Beach Program Volunteers needed in May to assist CCPRC’s Education Team

The Charleston County Park Education Department has a need for volunteers on the following days:

  • May 5th, 10:30-12:30 at Beachwalker County Park
  • May 15, 9:30-12:30 at Folly Beach County Park
  • May 22, 11-1:30 at Beachwalker County Park
  • May 25, 9:00-12:00 at Folly Beach County Park

The beach program volunteer will assist in the implementation of marine science school field trips.  This may include, but is not limited to: setting up for beach programs, pulling seine nets in the surf zone, assisting in the teaching of children, cleaning up after programs, and assisting in the maintenance of beach program supplies.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Knowledge of local marine fish and invertebrates
  • Knowledge of coastal processes
  • Knowledge of local flora found on South Carolina Barrier Islands
  • Ability to work with large groups of school children
  • Ability to function outdoors in a wide range of weather conditions
  • Ability to make competent decisions
  • Ability to provide excellent customer service to our park visitors
  • Ability to follow instructions effectively and work in a responsible and competent manner
  • Ability to establish and maintain harmonious relationships

If interested, please email Beth Burkett at bburkett@ccprc.com to sign up. Volunteers will be asked to register with the Park’s volunteer system at http://www.ccprc.com/1655/Volunteer.

Volunteer Opportunities at the Bulls Bay Nature Festival ~ May 20th 2017

The Seewee Center needs volunteers for the 5th Annual Bulls Bay Nature Festival – From the Forest to the Sea. Volunteers will help with checking people in, guiding them to activities, taking photos of the activities, etc. Here is a list of what is available.

For more information about the festival, please click this link!

Volunteers should contact Gina McQuilken at gina_mcquilken@yahoo.com or 860-961-6019

Volunteer Opportunities abound at the NMEA 2017 Conference ~ June 25th -29th 2017

Love the ocean? Love education? Love people?

You’d be a great volunteer for the NMEA 2017 Annual Conference in Charleston, SC.

The South Carolina Marine Educators Association (SCMEA) is thrilled to host the National Marine Educators Association (NMEA) conference in Charleston, South Carolina on Sunday, June 25th – Thursday, June 29th at the Charleston Marriott (170 Lockwood Blvd.). SCMEA and NMEA strive to improve and expand marine and aquatic education opportunities in South Carolina and across the nation.

Please fill out the application by Friday, May 26th to request your spot to volunteer during this FIN-tastic opportunity!

To submit volunteer application go to volunteer.nmea2017.org

Please share with colleagues and friends that you think will be interested in helping out!

Click here to see volunteer flyer Hope to SEA you there!

To learn more about this conference explore (www.nmea2017.org)

For more information, please contact:

Marni Friedman, Volunteer Committee Co-Chair mfriedman@nmea2017.org

Jackie Wong, Volunteer Committee Co-Chair jwong@nmea2017.org

Beach Program Volunteer needed on March 30th from 10:00-2:00 at Isle of Palms County Park

Under the supervision of the Education department, the beach program volunteer will assist in the implementation of marine science school field trips. This may include, but is not limited to: setting up for beach programs, pulling seine nets in the surf zone, assisting in the teaching of children, cleaning up after programs, and assisting in the maintenance of beach program supplies.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Knowledge of local marine fish and invertebrates
  • Knowledge of coastal processes
  • Knowledge of local flora found on South Carolina Barrier Islands
  • Ability to work with large groups of school children
  • Ability to function outdoors in a wide range of weather conditions
  • Ability to make competent decisions
  • Ability to provide excellent customer service to our park visitors
  • Ability to follow instructions effectively and work in a responsible and competent manner
  • Ability to establish and maintain harmonious relationships

If interested, please email Beth Burkett at bburkett@ccprc.com to sign up. Volunteers will be asked to register with the Park’s volunteer system.