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What do Blue-winged Teal and Pumpkin Spice Lattes Have In Common?

By: Paul Laurent- Lead Kayak and Birding Guide/Naturalist/Man of Many Hats It sure feels like summer here in South Carolina, but Fall is already here for the birds. The yearly calendar for our feathered friends is not quite lined up with our own ideas. The baby birds from Spring have fledged and left the nests,…

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August 28, 2019

Let em’ Nest, Let em’ Rest: Why Shorebirds Need Your Help This Season

By: Paul Laurent Kayak Guide, Naturalist, Expert Birding Guide Summer on the Grand Strand means it’s beach time for millions of people. The sun, sand, and surf are the big draws for countless visitors each year, but the beach isn’t just popular for tourists. Shorebirds and seabirds are common sights at the beach. We see small…

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July 10, 2019

Black River Outdoors Guides Travel to Costa Rica

You may have noticed that we have been little quieter on our social media pages in the past few weeks. This past September, our area experienced catastrophic flooding from Hurricane Florence that brought our kayak tour operations to an unfortunate halt. After the storm, we were only able to reopen our Salt Marsh Tours. We…

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November 28, 2018

Waterfowl with Angel Wing

Canada Goose with Angel Wing A large part of what we do as an EcoTour company involves wildlife rescue. Recently we helped capture and transport a wild Canada Goose that has a condition called “Angel Wing.” Angel Wing is a deformity in a birds wings where the outer wings or wrists twist outward instead of…

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October 14, 2018

The Effects of Natural Disasters on Recreation Tourism Along the Grand Strand

Before Myrtle Beach Was Myrtle Beach The Grand Strand has been a popular vacation destination for travelers across the world since the 1930’s. It’s hard to imagine, but before that time, most of the Myrtle Beach area that we know today was uninhabitable because of how difficult it was to get here. There were none…

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October 4, 2018

Rainy Day Kayaking

“Do you still kayak if it’s raining?” It’s a question we get asked all the time at Black River Outdoors. The answer is complicated… Sometimes we don’t have a choice in the matter. While the weatherman is pretty good here, he’s not perfect, and I can tell you several stories of tours that ended in…

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July 20, 2018

Raccoon Rescue!

One of the best parts of being a kayak guide is you never know what might happen.  This morning, Amanda and I both had Salt Marsh Tours.  We were unloading the boats and trying to wipe several pounds of pollen out of the seats when Amanda looked up and said “Hey! There’s a raccoon swimming…

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March 6, 2018

Spring is in the Air

Spring is in the air here on the Grand Strand (at least it was for a couple days – its currently cold and dreary again).  As the seasons change and the weather begins to warm up, all sorts of fascinating animal activity can be observed!  Amanda was barked at by a white-tailed deer a few…

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February 13, 2018

Fallout from Hurricane Irma

Brown Noddy blown in by Hurricane Irma While Hurricane Irma wreaked havoc on Florida and the Caribbean, here in the Grand Strand we got very lucky.  There was minimal damage, and we had the opportunity to see some very unusual wildlife.  When a big hurricane comes up from the south, it quite often blows all…

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September 15, 2017

Summer Kayaking on the Salt Marsh

Summer is here in full force on the Grand Strand, and in Murrells Inlet and Huntington Beach State Park that means some pretty amazing bird watching!  The herons, egrets, wood storks and Ibis that have been nesting in huge rookeries in the swamps have fledged their babies and are taking the kids over to Huntington Beach State Park to learn how to hunt in the shallow water of Mullet Pond.  We are seeing dozens and in some cases hundreds of wading birds stalking the shallow water along the causeway.  We are seeing Great Blue Heron, Little Blue Heron, Green Heron, Wood Stork, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, White Ibis, Glossy Ibis, Anhinga and much more The first roseate spoonbill of the season showed up a few weeks ago, so also keep an eye out for a bright pink bird with a…

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July 28, 2017

Update on the rescued Loggerhead Sea Turtle

We have good news so far on the rescued Loggerhead Sea Turtle. Gary (as he has been named) is doing well at the South Carolina Aquarium Sea Turtle Hospital in Charleston (see the link below for details). The Sea Turtle rescue system in South Carolina is pretty amazing. Between S.C.U.T.E (see link below) and the…

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June 16, 2017

Loggerhead Sea Turtle Rescue

A group of Black River Outdoors Guides and some naturalists from Huntington Beach State Park spent last Sunday afternoon paddling in the marsh behind Pawleys Island looking for the rare and elusive Diamond Backed Terrapin.  These little salt marsh turtles were hunted heavily for turtle soup in the past (this is no longer a popular…

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June 1, 2017

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