Please browse the following selection of trips.
Reservations are first come, first served—so sign up soon!
Can involve strenuous activity.
More than an hour on the road.
More than an hour on the water.
At least half of the time is spent indoors.
Most suitable for younger children.
Walking with Wildlife
9:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 22
Altamaha Wildlife Management Area is one of Georgia’s most species-rich WMAs, and Butler Island is a WMA focal point for wildlife viewing. Once an antebellum tidewater rice plantation and now a nationally recognized Important Bird Area, Butler features a Ducks Unlimited MARSH impoundment, observation towers and acres of flooded fields that draw ducks, white ibis, wood storks, bald eagles and scores of songbird and shorebird species in winter. Experts from DNR and The Nature Conservancy will lead a walk through this wildlife wonderland. Keep your eyes open and camera ready for marsh rabbits, deer, turtles and–if the morning is warm–alligators!
Walks at Butler Refuge can be muddy. Boots or other appropriate footwear is advised.
The Beauty of Birds
12:30 p.m.– 3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 20
Bird-watching is big. More than a fifth of Americans 16 and older are birders, and birding is one of the continent’s fastest-growing hobbies. If you want to learn what all the fuss is about and weren’t sure where to start, let DNR ornithologists introduce you to the beautiful world of birds. We’ll cover the basics and hit the beach for expert instruction as you try hone skills, identify species and begin building a life list. Young and old will enjoy this adventure.
Don’t have binoculars? Let us know when you register and we’ll provide a pair for the day.
Improve Your Nature Photography
12:30 p.m.– 3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
Whether you’re new to nature photography or have a few (thousand) images under your belt, we can help you improve in this fascinating pursuit. Work with respected wildlife photographers in the classroom and in the field, learning how to capture high-impact photos of animals, plants, landscapes and even insects, in your backyard and in settings as stunning as the Georgia coast.
Guests should bring their own camera.
Tooth and Fang
12:30 p.m.– 3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 20
American alligators and eastern diamondback rattlesnakes are two key reptilian predators on Georgia’s barrier islands. Yet, while alligators are thriving in many areas, eastern diamondbacks – North America’s largest native venomous snakes – are being considered for listing under the Endangered Species Act. Join UGA, DNR and Jekyll Island Authority scientists on Jekyll for a fascinating look at these wild creatures and the research that is helping us understand them.
Weather permitting, guests will help search for gators and rattlers that may be on the surface!
Georgia's Amazing Marshes
1:00 p.m.– 3:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 24
Poet Sidney Lanier called them a league of grass “broad in the blade” and laced at high tide with a million veins. Yet salt marshes are also a complex ecosystem brimming with wildlife and almost unbelievably rich in plant production – nearly 20 tons per acre! Board a DNR boat with Nongame Conservation Section scientists and naturalist Georgia Graves for a glimpse of the creatures and ecological importance of one of the coast’s most critical natural resources.
Please ask staff about appropriate dress. This excursion is weather-dependent.
Busting Cloister Clays
1:00–3:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 20
The Sea Island Shooting School is considered one of the best in the nation. And with good reason. Two skeet fields, a trap field and Five Stand offer a competitive range of shooting options and fun. The Shooting School’s staff features three NSCA-certified instructors and one NSSA-certified instructor. Expert or novice, this always-popular session is sure to sharpen your shooting.
Guests provide their transportation to and from the Shooting School, meeting there for the trip.
Paddle the Satilla
7:15 a.m.–3:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
The Satilla is one of the state’s most scenic rivers, a free-flowing stream that changes from cypress-lined blackwater to brackish-water expanse framed by marsh. Explore this beautiful river in an exclusive 10-mile kayaking tour led by Georgia Conservancy President Robert Ramsay, DNR staff and SouthEast Adventures. You’ll enjoy wildlife and wild sites, and lunch at the rustic, relaxing Satilla Lodge on the banks of the river.
This excursion requires strenuous activity and is weather-dependent. Kayaks, paddles, PFDs and instruction are included.
Adventure on Blackbeard NWR
7:15 a.m.–3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 6
Named for 18th century pirate Edwin Teach, the infamous Blackbeard, this remote island and National Wildlife Refuge is rich in wildlife and history. After a 17-mile boat ride, board UTVs with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and DNR staff to explore maritime forests, sweeping dune habitats and pristine beaches. You’ll also tour structures that speak to the island’s past as the largest federal marine quarantine station on the south Atlantic coast. Nor will we ignore the lore about Blackbeard and his buried treasure!
More rugged than most, this excursion includes long boat ride, strenuous activity and is weather-dependent.
The Art of Falconry
7:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 8
Experience an ancient sport on coastal lands carved from one of the South’s oldest hunting clubs. Father and son master falconers Steve and Adam Hein will be your hosts for a fascinating morning at 5,800-acre Broadfield, a Sea Island sporting club and lodge. Witness amazing aerial agility and hunting styles as the Heins use a Harris hawk, goshawk and a peregrine falcon–the world’s fastest animal–to find squirrels, bobwhites and other game. Cap the adventure with an exquisite, home-grown lunch and a side of history on the sport and the setting at Broadfield!
This excursion is weather-dependent.
Land of the Trembling Earth
7:30 a.m.–4:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 32
The Okefenokee Swamp is one of the world’s largest and best-known blackwater swamps, home to alligators, sandhill cranes, magnificent cypress trees and many other unique animals and plants. Led by experts, this excursion offers you a unique opportunity to explore Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge – its wildlife, habitats and history – by water and land, including along a boardwalk that features a 50-foot-tall observation tower overlooking the swamp!
Unusually low-water levels can limit boating access. Guests who don’t want to hike the ¾-mile boardwalk can investigate the Chesser homestead to see how early Okefenokee settlers lived.
St. Catherines Nature and Culture
7:45 a.m.–4:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 20
Owned and managed by the St. Catherines Island Foundation, this barrier island offers a heady mix of animals, natural communities and culture. The St. Catherines Island Center for Research, Conservation and Education conserves ecosystems and native wildlife, while also engaging in husbandry of exotic species (ever seen a lemur?). See the wild sights and the scope of island history, visiting the site of the 1600s Spanish mission Santa Catalina de Guale and possibly even the home of Button Gwinnett, a Georgia signer of the Declaration of Independence.
Loggerheads and Little Cumberland
7:45 a.m.–3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 8
Get inside the story of loggerhead sea turtles’ recovery in Georgia as you visit private Little Cumberland Island, home to North America’s longest-running loggerhead conservation project. Walk the beaches where Dr. Jim Richardson started the Little Cumberland Turtle Project in 1964. Listen and learn as DNR Sea Turtle Program Coordinator Mark Dodd explains the rebound of these federally listed turtles. See climax maritime forest, ephemeral dune-swale wetlands and one of our coast’s most dramatic dune fields, all managed under the auspices of the Little Cumberland Island Homeowners Association.
Requires extensive walking and is weather-dependent. Appropriate for ages 12 and older.
Frederica Club Lunkers
8:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
Fish for trophy largemouth bass at one of the most exclusive lakes in Georgia. As part of beautiful Frederica Golf Club on St. Simons Island, 400-acre Lake Frederica has been managed for trophy bass for almost a decade. The strain of largemouths stocked here – all females until 2013 – is fast-growing and aggressive! We’ll provide the equipment and guides, including Frederica Water Recreation and Wildlife Manager Teddy Elrod. Your role: Be ready to rock and reel! (P.S.: If you want to fish only that morning, we have your transportation covered.)
Appropriate for 12 and older. Fishing is catch and release; no license required. Equipment provided or bring your own.
Know the Connection
8:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
DNR’s Coastal Resources Division is helping Georgians understand the connectivity of the coast’s natural environment. Explore the ecological ties between black water and sea water as you travel aboard the R/V Marguerite from St. Simons estuary headwaters to the Atlantic. Biologists will explain the connections and provide a birds-eye view of natural features using an Unmanned Aerial System. Learn how the Brunswick Port works to sync operations with these sensitive ecosystems. And dig in as CRD lays out its trademark low country boil and roasted local oysters and clams!
Appropriate for guests as young as 10.
Restoring Altama Plantation
8:30 a.m.–3:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 24
As home to scores of rare species and natural habitats, the lower Altamaha River watershed is a conservation priority in Georgia’s State Wildlife Action Plan. Experience those species, sites and efforts to conserve them as you explore Altama Plantation with DNR and The Nature Conservancy. Dig deep into longleaf restoration, local history and land-protection insights. Scope a gopher tortoise burrow. Tour the river by boat. It’s an amazing look at a key Altamaha property brimming with wildlife, history and promise – a promise that is being realized as Altama is restored to its former glory.
Rare Wildlife at White Oak
8:45 a.m.–3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 20
Saving species on the brink of extinction takes hard work and commitment. But for conservationists at White Oak, this work is their passion. Witness the results of White Oak’s efforts involving more than 30 rare species – including cheetahs, rhinos, giraffes and more – as you explore this world-renown, 13,000-acre conservation center led by an experienced educator. Learn about the fascinating history of White Oak, and enjoy a buffet lunch in one of the center’s beautiful dining areas.
Appropriate for children.
Principles of Home Defense
9:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
Ever wondered what you would – or should – do if your home is invaded? Telluric Group will answer those questions and more in a unique course that delves into the knowledge, mindset and tactics to survive a home invasion. After lunch, you’ll will team with DNR rangers and Telluric instructors for time on the range, firing weapons and learning the pros and cons of each in regards to home protection.
9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
Ladies, this is your chance to spend the morning visiting the elegant and unique shops and boutiques on Saint Simons and Sea Island. We’ll treat you to a delightful lunch at the Cloister. And afterward, you’ll have the opportunity to pamper yourselves with renowned hair and make-up artists. Make the Weekend for Wildlife 30th anniversary banquet even more unforgettable!
Empires in Conflict
9:15 a.m.–3:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
Starting in the late 1500s, Spain, England and France struggled for control of Georgia for more than 200 years. The conflict ranged from cold war to hot war and involved – in addition to armies, navies and diplomats – Native Americans, enslaved and free Africans, pirates, priests, imported diseases, and armor-wearing mastiffs – the shock-and-awe weapon of the Spanish conquistadores. Join DNR Historic Preservation Division staff as you explore sites and artifacts on St. Simons and Jekyll Island that tell the story of empires in conflict. Also, enjoy lunch at another historic site: Jekyll Island Club!
At Our Table
9:15 a.m.–2:00 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
This new Weekend for Wildlife trip focuses on good food, rich history and ample culinary insights. Visit Gilliard Farms, a family-run organic farm with roots that tap the late 1800s. Continue the conversation at The Farmer & The Larder, rated “one of the South’s most exciting new restaurants.” There, CheFarmer Matthew Raiford, restaurant and farm co-owner, will lead a cooking demo heavy on participation. Then it’s time for lunch – and more Q&A – featuring pure Springer Mountain Farms chicken.
Sharpen Your Shooting
9:30 a.m.–3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 20
Whatever your skill level, a day at Sea Island Shooting School will improve your mechanics and boost your confidence. Try your hand at skeet, trap and Five Stand in a beautiful marsh-side setting. Benefit from Sea Island’s veteran teaching staff. Let Instinct Shooting expert James Rutland transform your ability to point into snap-shooting skills that will have you plugging nickels in mid-air with a BB gun! Relax at the clubhouse and dine at the Cloister on us.
Guests provide their transportation to and from the Shooting School and lunch at the Cloister.
Cruise on the Capt. Gabby
10:45 a.m.–3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
Fantastic river, fascinating boat, fine wines: This Altamaha River cruise on the Capt. Gabby has them all. The Capt. Gabby is a restored shrimp trawler based in Darien and named for the late Herbert Walker, who was born on Sapelo Island and worked on many shrimp boats. After a sumptuous lunch, you can sample a selection of wines as you soak in the peace and beauty of Georgia’s “Little Amazon.” DNR staff will explain not only the wildlife and habitats, but the importance of conserving this mighty river.
Marine Scientist for a Day
11:00 a.m.–3:30 p.m. • Spaces available: 10
Join DNR Coastal Resources Division staff to glimpse what lives in the waters of coastal Georgia! Board the R/V Anna–a shrimp trawler converted to a research vessel–and see how biologists inventory marine life using a traditional shrimp trawl. Get up close with everything from white shrimp to whiting! Dine on roasted local oysters and clams and a low country boil. Watch as staff demonstrate how resource managers are using Unmanned Aerial Systems to help in conservation.
Appropriate for guests as young as 10.
Click here to select your trip preferences.
Note: if you have not registered for the event through BidPal or through our Corporate Chair, Melissa Cummings, you are unable to make trip preferences at this time. Click here for information on how to Register, and do not hesitate to give Amber a call with questions – 404-615-7169.