SCDNR Wading Bird Program

News Releases


Wood Stork NestChristy Hand
Wading Bird Biologist
SCDNR Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division
585 Donnelley Drive
Green Pond, SC 29446

Caitlin Bowman
Seasonal Technician

Special Thanks

Private Landowners and Property Managers: We would like to thank all of the private landowners and managers who maintain their properties in a way that benefits the wading birds of South Carolina. Thank you for allowing SCDNR to access the wetlands where wading birds nest for our annual surveys. We greatly appreciate your cooperation and assistance.

Volunteers: Buddy Campbell, Debbi Albanese, Holley and Butch Miles, Mike Loftus, Bill Sammons, Bill Elliot, George Rock, and Terry Hand

SCDNR Employees:

  • Current: Felicia Sanders, Derrell Shipes, Mark Spinks, Mary-Catherine Martin, Nick Wallover, Janet Thibault, Owen Barker, Bucky Harris, Lisa Walters, Al Segars, Charlotte Hope, Dean Harrigal, Cathy Bazzel, Michael Hook, and Bess Kellett
  • Former: Tom Murphy (Retired), John Coker (Retired), DuBose Griffin, Deanna Ruth, Steve Bogan, Jennifer Bruce (Temporary) and Lisa Smith (Temporary)

USFWS Employees: Morgan Wolf, Melissa Bimbi, Lindsay Coldiron, Jason Ayers, and Joe Cockrell

Other Partners: Larry Bryan (Savannah River Ecology Lab), Rena Borkhataria (University of Florida), Dr. Peter Frederick (University of Florida), Colette Degarady (The Nature Conservancy), Eddie Mills (Nemours Wildlife Foundation), Dr. Ernie Wiggers (Nemours Wildlife Foundation), and The LowCountry Institute

The Wading Bird Program is currently funded by State Wildlife Grants through the US Fish & Wildlife Service.

Report a Banded or Tagged Wading Bird

Banded Wood Stork - Photo By Christy HandTagged Great Egret - Photo By Alan WormingtonResearchers have placed metal bands, colored bands with engraved numbers and/or letters, wing tags, radio transmitters, and satellite transmitters on a small number of wading birds. We are interested in any sightings of marked birds. This information helps us to learn about the movement patterns and life spans of wading birds. More information about the purpose of banding birds can be found at the Bird Banding Lab website.

If you see a live bird with an engraved color band, we would appreciate it if you could attempt to read the numbers/letters on the band or tag. Please also record the species of the bird, the color of the band or tag, the color of the letters, which leg that band was attached to, and the location of the bird. Please send the information to and report your sighting to the Bird Banding Lab. Photographs of the bird and the band are also very helpful. Additional examples of banded wading birds are available in the photo gallery.

If you find a dead bird of any species wearing a metal band, please report the band number to the Bird Banding Lab or by calling 1-800-327-BAND (2263).

Report a Wading Bird Colony

Although the majority of the wading bird colonies in the coastal area of the state are known and regularly surveyed by SCDNR, you may know of a colony that we have not surveyed. You can help the program by reporting colonies. If you would like to report a colony, please email a description including the species present, the location (the nearest roads, town, and GPS coordinates if possible – Do Not Enter The Colony – Google Earth can be used to generate coordinates), and the years the colony has been active to

Because many wading bird colonies are located on private land and we respect the privacy of the landowners, we are not able to post a detailed map of the known colonies on our website.

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteers may be able to assist the Wading Bird Program in the future (nest monitoring, colony surveying, data entry and/or database design). Please send an email to for more information about volunteering.

Current volunteers can enter their hours using the Volunteer Contribution Page