Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Birding in the Clemson Bottoms

The university where I work has a long history as an agricultural school, and the Bottoms are the last remnant of the riverine bottomlands along the Seneca River (now Lake Hartwell). 

This is an area that's been productively farmed for a long time, first by the Cherokee, then by Fort Hill plantation owners (John C. Calhoun and Thomas Green Clemson).  After the establishment of Clemson College, this area continued to be an important agricultural field.

Saved from inundation by Lake Hartwell by dikes created in the 60's (I think), the Bottoms are now divided between the Student Organic Farm, the former Aquaculture facility, and agronomic and horticultural research.

It's a great place to go birding, between the fields, ponds, and forest edges.

So in Field Ornithology this morning, we saw everything from Canada Geese, to Eastern Bluebirds, to Wilson's Snipe, to Eastern Meadowlarks.  Not to mention the Great Blue Heron, Sharp-shinned Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk, Song Sparrows, Savannah Sparrows, Yellow-rumped Warblers, Eastern Phoebe, American Robin, Belted Kingfisher, etc.

2 comments:

  1. Meadowlarks? Snipes? How great! I imagine the bottomlands are a great place indeed.

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  2. A mouthwatering collection of birds to a British birders mind!
    Rob

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