The Carolinas

I just spent a few days in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It was a family trip but I managed to spend three nights in the forest. The numbers of small mammals were very low: I saw only one bat and one mouse, and got almost nothing on bat detector. I blame the catastrophic decline in insect populations in eastern USA. Opossums, raccoons, grey foxes and deer were everywhere.

Green Swamp Reserve (in North Carolina): a great place to see Venus’ fly trap and other cool plants. I saw a cotton mouse there. Trailhead at 34.09318, -78.29929.

Lewis Ocean Bays Heritage Preserve: lots of eastern mole tunnels across firebreak roads; good place to try catching them if you have time. Access at 33.80582, -78.89089.

Waccamaw NWR: saw a Seminole bat at the boardwalk (follow Blue Trail from 33.78583, -79.03336).

Myrtle Beach State Park: a good place to practice telling marsh rabbits from eastern cottontails, as both occur in the coastal part.

Brookgreen Gardens: the same for fox and eastern grey squirrels. Lots of Spanish moss, so worth looking for roosting Seminole bats if you have a thermal scope and can get there early in the morning on an overcast day.

Myrtle Beach: if you’ve never seen a wild black rat in North America, there’s a lot of tame ones raiding feeders set up for feral cats at 33.7254901, -78.8385383, in broad daylight.


  • wildlife_watcher

    I like seeing foxes a lot. Did you see them driving or walking? I seem to see more while driving rarely while walking.

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