May/June 2019
Opening of Guale Preserve
We are proud to announce
that we have opened
Guale Preserve
to the St. Simons community
and its visitors.
Early last month we had a
"soft opening" at our
Middle Road portion of the property where families on bikes and hikers of all ages had a "first glimpse" of
this amazing 258-acre
forested preserve.

This month we officially opened the property, bringing to reality a dream of providing access to an area of St. Simons that has rarely been seen by the public. This land conservation project was made possible by hundreds of generous supporters and partners, including the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

At the  Middle Road Entrance off Lawrence Road, there are  15 parking spaces, including one space that is handicap accessible. From there visitors can hike more than two miles of paths and trails including Hickory Grove Trail and Pine Pond Trail.

Near the waterfront at the end of Village Drive,  Janet's Trail is accessible by foot . There are five parking spaces at this entrance for cars only.

We are not yet finished with all the improvements
that will be made at Guale Preserve.
Currently NO boats are allowed at the waterfront.
And more hiking trails will be completed in the coming months
in the forest habitat south of Middle Road.

For now, we have an off-duty police officer
on the property to ensure safety and compliance with
the posted rules and regulations
and to make sure that all visitors leave when
the park is closed each day at 4:00 PM.

Over the coming weeks, we look forward to sharing
more details about the Preserve and inviting you to a
festive community celebration that will take place in the fall.

Hours Open to Visitors:
10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
7 Days a Week

For additional information, please call our offices at (912) 638-9109.
Land Trust Volunteers
V olunteer training was at an all-time high recently when Cannon's Point Preserve Manager, Stephanie Knox, led multiple guided tours with our dedicated Property Volunteers .

These training tours included options for walking, biking, or driving the trails at Cannon's Point Preserve. Each tour was filled with information about research projects and other work going on at CPP, as well as its history, ecology, and habitat.

"We've found that volunteers are more invested and excited if they know these projects exist and why they're significant," according to Stephanie. "As they learn more, our volunteers are better prepared to share that knowledge with all visitors."

To become a Land Trust Property Volunteer,
please click HERE .
College of Coastal Georgia at CPP
Students learning under Dr. Amy Sneed of the College of Coastal Georgia joined Cannon's Point Preserve's Education Task Force to present science-driven lesson modules developed during the last school year. The curriculum these college students have created will be invaluable resources for middle grade science teachers.

Although the modules were created specifically for use at Cannon's Point Preserve, they are broad enough to be utilized at multiple locations and by teachers from across coastal Georgia, not just those in Glynn County.

We are incredibly grateful to the College of Coastal Georgia for their partnership, the CPP Education Task Force for its guidance and knowledge, and to the Terry Thomas Foundation for making educational initiatives like this possible and providing the resources to create and equip the Preserve's Coastal Ecology Lab .
Summertime Reminders
Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial beginning of summer, has come and gone, kids are out of school, and coastal wildlife is on the move. Below are a few reminders as we head into this hot, busy, summer season.
Nesting season is well under way on Georgia beaches. Loggerhead sea turtles began nesting in late April and although St. Simons Island can only claim four nests for the month of May, the entire Georgia coast has nearly 1,300 . With three more nesting months available, there could be close to 4,000 nests along our 100-mile coastline!

Keeping our beaches safe for mother turtles and hatchlings
is critical this time of year .
Bright lights, large holes/sandcastles, and beach recreation equipment left overnight can lower the success of both nesting females and the survival rates of hatchlings. Let's all do our part in protecting these incredibly threatened species.

Click HERE to read more about
sea turtle season and
what you can do to help them.

And don't forget shorebirds! Wilson's plovers, least terns, and other resident and migratory birds utilize Georgia's beaches for nesting and raising their young. Click HERE to learn ways to ensure their safety.
Following a warm winter, this spring brought record high temperatures throughout the southeast. When this happens, the abundance of ticks in less-manicured locations can be higher than normal.

In many parts of the US, ticks may die off in the winter when temperatures drop below fifty degrees. In Georgia, ticks can easily survive a warm winter causing an overwhelming population the following spring and summer . As winters continue to warm, this may become a problem in northern states as well.

The most abundant tick species in Georgia are the American dog tick , black-legged tick (pictured above), and the lone star tick . All three species are known to transmit diseases. If you are in a wild area, please be sure to take preventative measures by treating your clothing and skin and performing full-body tick checks once you return home.

Click HERE to read more about ticks in Georgia and best ways to find and remove them from your body.
Blue Mind
In today's always-on society, stress plays a major role in our daily lives. Attempts to remedy this come in many different forms, but taking the "Blue Mind" approach is one of our favorites.

The term "Blue Mind" was coined by scientist and author Wallace J. Nichols. It is described as a mildly meditative state characterized by calm, peace, unity, and a sense of general happiness and satisfaction with life in the moment - all due to being in or around water .

In his book, Blue Mind: How Water Makes You Happier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do , Nichols sights s tudies that have shown being near water can improve people’s physical and mental health and counterbalance the damaging effects of chronic stress.

Click HERE to read a Q&A with Wallace J. Nichols.
If maintaining a "blue" state of mind doesn't draw you in, try practicing Gökotta !

This Swedish word is untranslatable in the English language, but essentially means "to rise at dawn in order to go out and listen to the birds sing." Gökotta is all about having a positive and energetic morning that will craft a peaceful and productive day .

One way to do that is to immerse yourself in a mature maritime forest at Cannon's Point Preserve or
visit the newly opened
Guale Preserve. Whether you choose to "blue mind" by the river at Taylor's Fish Camp or "forest bathe" on your hike at Hickory Grove Trail, you're bound to create an experience that will lead to a peaceful and productive day.

Click HERE for a list of parks, trails and greenspaces for you to enjoy on St. Simons.
Shrimping Season
A Changing Ratio
Did you know that Georgia's shrimping industry dates back to the early 20 th century? Today, it’s still one of the largest and most important industries in the area. However, with hundreds of licensed shrimp boats in coastal waters during the summer, there are legitimate concerns of “bycatch,” or other marine species getting caught in nets. Our beloved sea turtles are particularly vulnerable to being trapped.

To address the issue, in the early 1990’s Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) were developed and attached to shrimp nets to assist in bycatch removal . Every year, representatives from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division make sure that all shrimping vessels in the state are equipped with TEDs and that they’re being used properly.

Commercial and recreational shrimping season kicked off
at 8 A.M. on May 29th.

Click HERE for more information about turtle excluder devices.
The warming climate is affecting wildlife all over the planet - and in many different ways. One interesting, but alarming way is that of sex ratios. Recent studies have shown that sea turtles' sex ratios are being heavily impacted by the warming climate .

The sex of a sea turtle, and all turtles, is determined by the temperature inside its nest. Sea turtle eggs are surrounded by beach sand that heats up during the day and cools off at night. When the average temperature of that nest is high enough, females will be produced over males.

In certain parts of the world, scientists have found that due to hotter summers (and far warmer nests), female sea turtle hatchlings are now outnumbering males 116:1 . To combat this dramatic ratio, some sea turtle biologist are shading the nests on their beaches to keep the temperature down.

Read more HERE .
Land Trust In The News
Land Trust Dictionary
The Land Trust's Director of Development and Communications, Emily Ellison, was highlighted in the May issue of Paisley Magazine and interviewed for their monthly feature, "Hear Me Roar."

She may not have roared too loudly in the article, but Emily did reveal the moment that Cannon's Point Preserve "changed my life" and when it became clear that working for the St. Simons Land Trust was going to be her next adventure.

Click HERE to read the feature in Paisley Magazine.
Management Plan"

An Ecological Management Plan, or EMP, is a property-specific document that contains the processes and instructions to manage a property and its operations in such a way so as to protect and enhance the biodiversity and ecology of the property .

Ecological surveys must be done prior to creating an EMP so there is thorough understanding of the habitats, animals and plant species on each property.

These plans, like the one at Cannon's Point Preserve are meant to be adhered to for generations to come.
We Have a New Home!
By now you've probably seen the exterior of our new home at 1810 Frederica Road. We hope that you'll also stop by soon and let us share the inside of the newly renovated building that serves as our offices.

We remain truly grateful to a generous supporter who provided restricted funds for the purchase and renovation of the existing structure.

As you may remember, 1810 is the site of a previously proposed dollar store that the community passionately opposed. Instead, the Land Trust was able to acquire and re-purpose the existing structure, creating not only rent-free offices and much-needed storage, but also increasing green space on the island, protecting the magnificent live oaks on the property, and providing a site for community gatherings, environmental and educational sessions, and volunteer training.

We look forward to sharing our new home with the entire community.

Thank you to The Brunswick News for celebrating with us.
Read more HERE and HERE .
Save the Dates
June 5 : GreenScene of Coastal Georgia - Golden Isles GreenDrinks. Ocean Lodge, 5:30pm. RSVP HERE .

June 8 - Property Volunteer Orientation, 9am, SSLT Office. Register HERE .

October 19 : Cannon's Point Preserve 5-year Anniversary Celebration. More info to come.

November 9 : Guale Preserve Trail Run and Fun - Community Celebration. More info to come.

January 18, 2020 : 20th Annual Oyster Roast