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Bulls Island is located off the coast of South Carolina. It is one of four barrier islands found within the National Wildlife Refuge of Cape Romain. This six-and-a-half-mile uninhabited island is home to countless wildlife and endangered species. Two hundred and seventy-seven different bird species can be found on or near the island. Boneyard Beach, on the north end of the island, is a stunning sight to see with its old and weathered maritime forest scattered about the sandy beach. Many of the fallen trees are oak trees, bleached by salt and sun. Photographing in this location at the end of March at low tide and sunrise made for some interesting images, a unique experience that was well worth getting up around 3 a.m., driving from Charleston and taking a ferry on the intercostal waterway. A prearranged truck ride dropped us off and picked us up close to the beach.
The island's official name is Bull Island, but the locals refer to it as Bulls Island. The history of Bulls Island dates back to early settlers, as far back as the 1700's. The island is named for Stephen Bull, an Englishman who came to North America around 1670 aboard the frigate 'The Carolina.' Bull was one of the first white people to visit the island and one of the first white settlers in South Carolina.
In 1932, the Cape Romain Wildlife Refuge was established as a migratory bird refuge. In 1936 New York banker Gayer Dominick, the owner of Bulls Island, gave the island to the US Fish and Wildlife Service with the intention of it becoming part of Cape Romain. The refuge not only preserves the habitats of native bird species, but protects other species, especially endangered species. It has played a large role in the successful recovery of the endangered red wolf. Today, the refuge actively participates in recovery efforts for the threatened Loggerhead Sea Turtle, South Carolina's State Reptile.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor