The Coastal Discovery Museum is one of those special treats, right off the beaten path, easy to access and FREE, and sometimes with the added bonus of community events, such as the farmers market that was running on the day that we arrived. It is a wonderful place to learn about the local history, including oyster farming, and take in the natural beauty that surrounds the site.
There are two boardwalks that lead out into the saltmarsh, where you would be hard-pressed not to find at least one (but often multiple) crabs, shore and water birds, and possibly even otters.
If you were unfortunate enough to miss out on wildlife opportunities on the boardwalk, you would easily find something wild in the butterfly house. There were multiple beautiful butterflies to see in various stages of their lifecycle.
There are also a multitude of butterflies outside of the butterfly house as well, attracted by the irresistable smells of their host plants, the native species will flock to the gardens to lay their eggs and ensure the success of their future generations.
South Carolina is also home to a few more natives that you may not know about, such as carnivorous bog plants. The pitcher plants here were putting on a show, but depending on the time of year and the amount of rain, you may also spot Venus fly-traps in the carnivorous garden.
No garden is complete without native pollinators, and it’s always nice if you provide the pollinators a home. Many of the pollinators you see in your garden are solitary, unlike their imported cousins the european honey bee. These pollinator homes are hundreds of tubes where the small mason bees and similar will seek refuge and reproduce. They dont mind having neighbors, but they don’t want to live together!
The juvenile five-lined skink was sunbathing and also finding refuge in the pollinator house.
There were also cool art pieces throughout the garden, but this rusted seahorse, made by what appeared to be discarded mechanical parts, was my favorite.
If you’ve got some time to spare and would like an afternoon of exploration, the Coastal Discovery Museum should definitely be on your list!