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Explore Earth Day Nature Trail in Brunswick Georgia.

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Earth Day Nature Trail in Brunswick GATake a self-guided trail winds across salt marshes, tidal ponds and the coastal hammock high ground. Visit the wooden boardwalks across wading bird habitat, osprey, eagle nesting platform, wildlife observation decks and observation tower.

A wonderful coastal treasure waits to be discovered at the DNR Coastal Resources Division (CRD) Headquarters-- the Earth Day Nature Trail! Take a journey through the Nature Trail and Marsh Walk and discover the wonders of our natural surroundings. Free admission. Open during daylight hours.

The Earth Day Nature Trail provides an opportunity for a "bird's eye view" of Georgia's outstanding coastal marshes.

Georgia's coastal marshlands encompass approximately 378,000 acres in a 4- to 6-mile band behind the barrier islands. These marshes have been identified as one of the most extensive and productive marshland systems in the United States.

Developed from lagoons that filled with sediments and deposits from rivers and streams flowing to the ocean, the marshlands of Georgia are a vital part of one of the world's greatest estuaries.
Standing view for Earth Day Nature TrailSalt marshes are responsible for the continuation and survival of the intricate balance of nature within such estuaries. Producing biomass measuring nearly 20 tons to the acre, a salt marsh like this is four times more productive than the most carefully cultivated corn. Georgia's salt marshes produce more food energy than any estuarine zone on the eastern seaboard.

A variety of marsh grasses flourish in this habitat and are fed from the onrushing tides. The marsh serves as a nursery ground for the growing juveniles of fish and shellfish, and these fish in turn support larger fish.

The rare wood stork may be seen soaring high over the marsh. Best viewing is early morning or late afternoon, when great numbers of birds are very active and easily seen. Wood storks periodically rest and sun their wings at the edge of a bird viewing pond. You may also see wood storks flying the thermal air currents in the vicinity of the nature trail.

The salt marshes are flooded twice daily by the rise and fall of the tide. They are the home or feeding ground of many kinds of marine life, including laughing gulls, great egrets, wood storks, brown pelicans, ospreys, diamondback terrapins, clapper rails, raccoons, willets, red-winged blackbirds, kingfishers, great blue herons, snowy egrets, and marsh rabbits.

Plants found along the trail include sea ox-eye, periwinkle, pricklypear cactus, wax myrtle, red cedar, and smooth cordgrass.

More information - Earth Day Nature Trail Brochure
Bird at Earth Day Nature Trail
Outdoor Pavilion - An orientation center/outdoor pavilion located adjacent to the Earth Day Nature Trail entrance features benches and TV monitors for viewing videos.

The center, a 28 x 44 foot open sided shelter, was designed as an outdoor classroom for students to learn about the nature trail and coastal Georgia. Benches may be moved to the side to provide an open area for demonstrations, crafts or other educational activities.

Use of the pavilion must be scheduled in advance by contacting the Coastal Resources Division (CRD). Educational video films may be checked out by the group leader for student use.

To schedule a visit to the Earth Day Nature Trail or use of the orientation center-outdoor pavilion, or for additional information, please contact CRD at (912) 264-7218.
Sidney Lanier BridgeRecommendations - To increase the number of qualified trail guides, teachers and leaders should allow each field trip assistant (i.e. teacher aids, parents, etc.) to study this information and divide each group into smaller groups.

Small groups typically increase the attention span for individual students and increase the opportunity for the guide to teach or communicate with the students. Although a predetermined movement pattern for the trail may be established, it is recommended to allow small groups to travel in different directions and move about as independent groups with their guide. For example, several small groups may view a video while others visit the trail.

Typically allow 15 – 30 minutes for the nature trail walk and 15 – 20 minutes for the marsh walk. Restrooms and drinking water are available in the DNR Coastal Regional Headquarters second floor reception area during business hours. Picnic tables are available along the trail for students having lunch.
Nature Trail Rules
Bullet No Smoking Bullet No Fires Bullet No Pets Bullet No Alcoholic Beverages BulletLeave Only Your Foot Prints
Bullet Do Not Disturb Plants and Animals Bullet Open Daily During Daylight Hours
Reservation Information - Use of the center must be scheduled in advance by contacting DNR Coastal Resources Division (CRD) at (912) 264-7218
Contact, Address and Directions
Phone: (912) 264-7218 - Address: One Conservation Way, Brunswick, GA 31520 - Glynn County - Directions I-95 S to Exit 29; Hwy 17 N to Conservation Way, on N end of Sidney Lanier Bridge. Park at GA Dept of Natural Resources (DNR).

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Bullet Printable GA Earth Day Nature Trail Map
Bullet Earth Day Trail Brochure
Bullet GA Coast Salt Marshes

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