The Key to Abundant Waterfowl Populations

The creation of more and better quality habitat adds up to increased waterfowl populations and more hunting opportunities for all South Carolina waterfowl hunters. Proper habitat management must focus on waterfowl habitat needs during the entire annual life cycle of ducks and geese. For 36 years, SCWA biologists have worked with hundreds of private landowners along with state and federal natural resource agencies to enhance waterfowl habitat across South Carolina. Projects range from the installation of 24,000 wood duck nest boxes to the creation of thousands of acres of waterfowl impoundments.

The SCWA 1,237-acre Wildlife Education Center functions as a habitat research and demonstration area with over 500 acres of waterfowl impoundments. Each year new waterfowl habitat management techniques are tested and fine-tuned in order to share them with waterfowl managers across the state.

Since 1987, SCWA biologists have worked with landowners across South Carolina to design and create thousands of acres of valuable waterfowl habitat that is producing more local ducks and also providing wintering habitat to thousands of migratory ducks and geese. Each winter, the SCWA Wildlife Education Center winters up to 40,000 migratory ducks.

SCWA waterfowl biologists have over 40 years of habitat management experience and are available to assist public and private landowners who desire to improve their waterfowl habitat. SCWA also works diligently with state and federal agencies to help increase funding for state and federal waterfowl habitat projects. If you would like to improve your waterfowl habitat, please give us a call at 803-452-6001.

“Super Flats” Restoration Project Taking Place in Lake Marion

 MONCKS CORNER, S.C. – Santee Cooper will be conducting aerial herbicide treatments, by helicopter, on 580 acres of giant cutgrass and giant salvinia around areas in Lake Marion throughout the month of August. The treatment is intended to improve public access for fishing, boating and duck hunting, enhance fish and wildlife habitat, and reduce further spread of giant salvinia to other areas of the Santee Cooper Lakes system. 

Giant salvinia is an invasive plant from Brazil. It was found in the lakes in 2017 and has since rapidly spread from upper Lake Marion to other areas of both Lake Marion and Lake Moultrie. Giant cutgrass has also created dense stands restricting public access in the area known as the “Super Flats.” Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-approved aquatic herbicides will be used for the application and pose no water-use restrictions in the areas treated. 

The Super Flats Restoration Project will focus on the areas of Persanti Island, Hickory Top, and Jacks Creek in Lake Marion, as much of those areas are now inaccessible because of thick vegetation. The Restoration Project is expected to continue over the next several years. 

This is a cooperative project with South Carolina Waterfowl Association, Ducks Unlimited, South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, and Santee Cooper. Inquiries regarding the operation can be made by contacting Santee Cooper at aquaticplantcontrol@santeecooper.com

You can help control the spread of invasive species. Remove any visible mud, plants, fish or animals before transporting boats and trailers. Eliminate water from equipment before transporting. Clean anything that comes in contact with water (boats, trailers, equipment, clothing, dogs, etc.). Never release plants, fish or animals into a body of water unless they came out of that body of water. Report aquatic weed problems in public waters to the SCDNR Aquatic Nuisance Species Program at 803-755-2872. 

Santee Cooper is South Carolina’s largest power provider and the ultimate source of electricity for 

2 million people across the state. Through its low-cost, reliable and environmentally responsible electricity and water services, and through innovative partnerships and initiatives that attract and retain industry and jobs, Santee Cooper helps power South Carolina. To learn more, visit http://www.santeecooper.com and follow #PoweringSC on social media.