A boardwalk loop through a wetland wonderland containing the largest remaining bald cypress-tupelo swamp in the world. The 15,000+-acre sanctuary here, now managed by the National Audubon Society, revolves around 1,800 acres of ancient trees, some of which have evaded the ax and the saw for more than 1,000 years. Francis Beidler Forest is closed Mondays and on major holidays. Regular daily hours are 9 A.M. to 5 P.M.
Wildflowers are not something most people would expect to find in a swamp, but cardinal flowers, greenfly orchids, butterweed, swamp azalea, and atamasco lily are present, and the sanctuary is home to South Carolina’s only known population of the rare Carolina trillium. The wildlife here is abundant and tremendously varied. At least 44 mammal species have been identified, including deer, mink, flying squirrel, red fox, bobcat, river otter, and numerous varieties of bats. There are 50 reptile species, including alligator, water moccasin as well as many nonvenomous snakes, and a wide variety of turtles.
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