Santee National Wildlife Park

Santee National Wildlife Park

Overview

Area name

Santee National Wildlife Park

Area Location

Starting from exit #102 on I95, head north following the signs for Highway 15 and Highway 301 for approximately .4 miles. The entrance road to the park will be on the left.

Area Map

Access

Hours of Operation: summer 7:00 – 7:00, winter 8:00 – 5:00, some area closures occur to protect waterfowl from the beginning of November through the end of February.

Facilities

Background

Four units make up this wildlife over 15,000-acre refuge: Bluff Unit, Cuddo Unit, Dingle Pond Unit and Pine Island Unit. Grab a bird checklist and map at the visitor’s center found on Bluff Unit. While on Bluff Unit, travel to Wrights Bluff Nature Trail which has a boardwalk leading to an agricultural field and eventually an observation tower.

Pine Island Unit’s 3.8 trail miles offer a broad spectrum of habitats. You can reach Pine Island Unit by continuing down Dingle Pond Road for .5 mile, turn right at Road 400 and drive for 2 miles where the road turns to dirt. Continue on the dirt road for approximately 1.3 miles then park by the gate on the left.

Dingle Pond Unit offers views of the bay on a .8 mile hiking trail, but very limited parking. To reach Dingle Pond follow the service road under the highway from I95, exit 102. Take a left turn onto Road 400 where you will find a stop sign, turn left for 1.7 miles and look for a gated road on the right which is the trailhead for Dingle Pond hiking trail.

Cuddo Unit has a 7.5 mile drive as well as hiking trails. From the visitor center turn left on Highway 301. Look for Liberty Hill Road on the right after approximately 3.7 miles, drive 2 miles and turn left onto Bill David Road. 4 miles later turn right onto Willima Brunson Road, then at the intersection of William Brunson Road and Rogers Road, turn right. Finally turn left at the intersection of Rogers Road and Log Jam road which leads you to the entrance.

Year-round excellent birding throughout this region.

Key Birds

Resident

Anhinga, Red-shouldered Hawk, Northern Bobwhite, Brown-headed Nuthatch, Marsh Wren.

Summer

Least Bittern, Little Blue Heron, Tricolored Heron, Purple Gallinule, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Yellow-throated Vireo, Wood Thrush, Prothonotary Warbler, Yellow-throated Warbler, Blue Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, Painted Bunting, Orchard Oriole.

Winter

Common Loon, Tundra Swan, Redhead, Canvasback, Lesser Scaup, Northern Harrier, American Kestrel, Sandhill Crane, American Woodcokc, Wilson’s Snipe Bonaparte’s Gull, Forster’s Tern, Blue-headed Vireo, Sedge Wren, Winter Wren, Palm Warbler, Rusty Blackbird.