South Beach

South Beach

Overview

Area name

South Beach

Area Location

South Beach

Area Map

Access

  • South Beach is the southern tip of Sea Pines accessible by South Sea Pines Drive.
  • Daily visitors to Sea Pines can enter by paying an admission of $6 per car at either of the two security gates.
  • Sea Pines is a private residential community, accessible to resort guests, property owners and their guests.
  • There are two access points to the beach:
    • Tower Beach (named for the large green water tower at the entrance) is on the left side of South Sea Pines Drive as you approach South Beach. Car parking here is available for residents only.
    • Across from the South Beach Racquet Club is a parking area with access to the beach.

Facilities

  • South Beach contains the South Beach Marina Village with shops and restaurants.

Key Birds

Resident

Pied-billed Grebe, Anhinga, Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Cattle Egret, Little Blue Heron, Tricolored Heron, Black-crowned Night-Heron, White Ibis, Wood Stork, Wood Duck, Osprey, Cooper’s Hawk, Red-shouldered Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk, Clapper Rail, Sora, Killdeer, American Oystercatcher, Eurasian Collared-Dove, Belted Kingfisher, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, White-eyed Vireo, Brown-headed Nuthatch, Eastern Bluebird, Yellow-throated Warbler, Pine Warbler, Common Yellowthroat, Seaside Sparrow, Eastern Towhee, Eastern Meadowlark.

Spring

Green Heron, Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, Purple Martin, Barn Swallow, Tree Swallow, Bobolink, warblers in migration.

Summer

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron.

Fall

Warblers in migration.

Winter

Ring-necked Duck, Ruddy Duck, Hooded Merganser, Double-crested Cormorant, Wilson’s Snipe, Eastern Phoebe, Cedar Waxwing, Bonaparte’s Gull.

Background

  • South Beach is the very southern end of Sea Pines and Hilton Head Island.
  • The prime observation time (regardless of tides) is from dawn to about 8:30am. Skimmers are very active at that hour, as are all the shore patrollers.  Thereafter, birding is best on oncoming tides. Early fall and winter are the best seasons, particularly after northeasterly rain and winds when Northern Gannets sometimes dive close to shore.
  • South Sea Pines Drive is the only approach, by land.
    • The first beach access is at the Tower Beach (named for the large water tower at the entrance) on the left side of South Sea Pines Drive.  From the parking lot, take the boardwalk across the dunes to the beach.   However, parking here is for residents only.
    • The second access point is across the road from the South Beach Racquet Club. Follow the path to the beach.
  • Be alert for sparrows when crossing the dunes. Painted Buntings nest along the tree line bordering the primary dunes.  Once beyond the dune proceed south (right) around the tip of the Island to the marine inlet.
  • While in the South Beach area, scan Sprunt Pond and Catesby Pond at the intersections of South Sea Pines Drive with Sprunt Pond Road and Audubon Pond Road for wintering waterfowl, particularly Hooded Mergansers and Buffleheads.

Birds To Watch