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Crab Bank: 22 acres owned by nesting seabirds

Posted on May 10, 2014 by in Place

From live web came at Crab Bank island in Charleston HarborCrab Bank is a spit of an island in Charleston Harbor off Mount Pleasant. A mere sandbar for at least 250 years, Crab Bank finally became an above-water island in the 1950s. It regularly changes shape, getting bigger and smaller in the tidal currents, but staying above water. Today it’s 22 acres.

With no predators, the grasslands of Crab Bank are an ideal nesting place for seabirds — one of only nine such sites in South Carolina. Among the seabirds which nest at Crab Bank are pelicans, terns, egrets, the Laughing Gull, Wilson’s Plover, American Oystercatcher, Tricolored Heron and White Ibis.

The Crab Bank Seabird Sanctuary is closed to the public during the nesting season from March 15 to Oct. 15.. But the island’s Spy on a Bird live web cam — installed with the support of the SC Coastal Conservation League, South Carolina Department of Natural Resources and South Carolina Aquarium — provides a 24-hour open window to the entire seasonal nesting process. During May, there are egg hatchings, and in July fledglings will be on display as they take wing.

To see what’s happening on the island, click to the live web cam.


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