SCPARC Annual Meeting

When:  January 13th & 14th, 2024
The Port Royal Sound Foundation Maritime Center, Okatie, SC

We are very excited to be hosting our upcoming Annual Meeting on January 13th and 14th at The Port Royal Sound Foundation Maritime Center just outside of the beautiful Beaufort, South Carolina. Over the course of the weekend we will have great presentations lined up, delivered by incredible local herpetologists and researchers on research, conservation, and education of South Carolina’s reptiles and amphibians. We will hold our Annual Business meeting where you can help direct the future of SCPARC. And we will also be hosting Social Hours and Field Trips to explore some great spots for local herps with fellow herp enthusiasts, educators, and researchers. Register for the annual meeting by following the link below. The schedule of events will be posted to this page soon! So check back in for more details! 

Schedule of Events

Please note this schedule is subject to change. Be sure the check back in on the days leading up to the event to confirm times or presentations and field trips.

Saturday, January 13th
9:00 am – Check-in and Coffee
9:30-10:00 am – Introduction

10:00-11:00am Presentations
Presentations are expected to be 15 minutes long followed by 5 minutes of questions.

    • SCDNR State Reptile and Amphibian Projects Update – Andrew Grosse | SCDNR
    • Home Range and Spatial Ecology of Northern Pine Snakes (Pituophis melanoleucus) in Coastal South Carolina – Alan Jones | Coastal Carolina University
    • The Influence of Researcher Disturbance on Raccoon Predation of American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) Nests – Clarissa Tuten | Coastal Carolina University

11:00-11:20am Break

11:20-12:20pm Presentations
Presentations are expected to be 15 minutes long followed by 5 minutes of questions.

    • Identifying Genomic Patterns That Underlie Life History Patterns in a Widespread Lizard – Matthew R. McTernan | Clemson University
    • The Last of Us: Annual Survival of Mature Female Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes (Crotalus adamanteus) on Parris Island, South Carolina – Emily Gray | Marshall University
    • Insights from Long-term Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus) Monitoring at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island – Dr. Jayme Waldron | Marshall University

12:20pm Lunch

12:45-2:00 pm Poster Session:
Poster Authors are expected to be present at their posters during this time

    • An Assessment of the Reptiles and Amphibians on the Black River Cypress Preserve – Parker Gibbons | Black River Cypress Preserve
    • Thermal and Habitat Effects on Rattlesnake Reproductive Ecology in the Southeastern U.S. – Matthew Gacheny | Marshall University
    • The Pine Snake Puzzle: Solving the Mystery with eDNA – Peyton Kinavey | Coastal Carolina University
    • Venom Complexity within Garter Snakes and the Role of Diet in Toxin Diversification – Tucker Hepinstall | Clemson University

2:00-3:30pm Presentations

    • SCPARC Buisness Meeting
    • The Genomic Landscape and the Evolution of the Viperidae and their Venoms – Dr. Christopher Parkinson | Clemson University (45 minutes followed by 10 minute of questions)

4-7pm Social Hour at Shellring Brewery

Sunday, January 14th – Field Trips

Our goal is to provide the opprotunity for all meeting registrants to particpate in a field trip exploring ecologically special areas in the region. However, due to logistics of each trip, trips may have a maximum number of participants. We will be opening registration for these trips at 5pm on Sunday, January 7th and a sign up email will be sent out to all Annual Meeting Registrants. Please sign up as soon as possible and if you have any issues registering, or if your preferred trip is filled up, please reach out to us and we will do our best to accomodate!

Spring Island – 10am-1pm
Maximum of 15 people | registration required
Led by Herpetologist Tony Mills, we will be exploring the wild areas of the ecologically-diverse Spring Island Community. We will take a trailer to explore different habitats on the property and along the way we will learn from Tony about the important work the Spring Island Trust is doing to conserve habitat on the property as well as research being conducted on reptiles and amphibians.

Buckfield Tract – 10am-1pm
Maximum of 15 people | registration required
Join us for an exploration of the Buckfield tract in the upper Port Royal Sound watershed. Straddled by the tullifiny and coosawhatchie rivers, a diverse array of sandy upland habitat, hardwood forests, and river flood plains are sure to harbor a fascinating assemblage of reptiles and amphibians. This property is currently owned by the Nature Conservancy and is planned to be handed over to the state to become one of the newest WMAs in South Carolina. 

Hunting Island – 10am – 1pm (Pending)
Maximum of 15 people | registration required
Join us for a journey out to the unique and very-wild Hunting Island. We will explore saw palmetto thickets, freshwater dune swales, and hidden beaches for the unique assemblage of reptiles and amphibians on the property. We will learn about the history and ecology of the island along the way as well as the work being done  to document and monitor the herpetofauna on the island.