Francis Marion National Forest

Francis Marion National Forest


Area name

Francis Marion National Forest

Area Location

Take US 17 north from Mt. Pleasant for approximately 11 miles, left turn onto FS Road 228 (dirt Ion Swamp Road).

Area Map


Admission: Free.

Hours of Operation: every day, all day.



Francis Marion National Forest covers almost 250,000 acres. Highlights include Ion Swamp Road, Ion Swamp Interpretive Trail, South Tibwin Plantation and Wambaw Bridge.

Best birding occurs March through June.

Key Birds


Anhinga, White Ibis, Red-shouldered Hawk, King Rail, Red-cockaded Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, Brown-headed Nuthatch, Bachman’s Sparrow, Seaside Sparrow.


Least Bittern, Swallow-tailed Kite, Mississippi Kite, Chuck-will’s-widow, Whip-poor-will, Prothonotary, Yellow-throated Warbler, Swainson’s Warbler, Hooded Warbler, Kentucky Warbler, Summer Tanager, Blue Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, Painted Bunging, Orchard Oriole.


American Black Duck, Hooded Merganser, Bald Eagle, Sora, Orange-crowned Warbler, Black-and-white Warbler, Fox Sparrow, Nelson’s Sparrow, Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed Sparrow, Rusty Blackbird.