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South Carolina Rice Fields

Using This Website

The purpose of this website is to locate and describe former freshwater tidal rice fields in coastal South Carolina. Inland, non-tidal fields are not included.

When an individual field has been located, a data sheet appears that includes a vegetation map, plant community cover areas, total area, ownership, plantation name, tax map number, water control status and for most, a recent low level oblique aerial photo.

Vegetation maps and areas were determined from 1999 National Aerial Photography Program color infrared aerial photos using image analysis software (Erdas Imagine).

Definitions and abbreviations to describe habitats/plant community types used on the data sheets include:

  • Water = Open water with or without Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV);
    e.g., Hydrilla, Potamogeton (pondweed) and Cabomba (fanwort).
    Occurs in deeper subtidal areas.
  • FLV = Floating Leaf Vegetation;
    e.g., Ludwigia (primrose), Eichornia (water hyacinth) and Polygonum (smartweed).
    Occurs in shallower subtidal areas.
  • ITEM = Intertidal Emergent Marsh;
    e.g., Zizaniopsis (white marsh), Pontederia (pickerelweed) and Peltandra (green arum).
    Occurs in lower intertidal areas.
  • Trees = Trees in scattered stands with ITEM understory (Developing Swamp Forest – DSF) or closed canopy stands with little or no ITEM (Swamp Forest – SF);
    e.g., Acer (red maple), Nyssa (gum), Salix (willow) and Taxodium (cypress).
    Occurs in higher intertidal areas.
  • “Open” – describes water control status and means dikes with breaches and no water control.
  • “Closed” - describes water control status and means dikes intact. Functionality of water control structures unknown.
  • “Impounded” - describes water control status and means dikes intact and field with functional water control structures.
  • “TMS#” - county tax map number.
  • Plantation Names - follow the references listed below:
    • Suzanne Cameron Linder. 1995. Historical Atlas of the Rice Plantations of the Ace River Basin - 1860. [Columbia, South Carolina] : Published by the South Carolina Dept. of Archives & History for the Archives and History Foundation, Ducks Unlimited, and The Nature Conservancy, 1995.
    • Suzanne Cameron Linder and Marta Leslie Thacker. 2001. The Historical Atlas of the Rice Plantations of Georgetown County and the Santee River. Columbia, S.C. : Published by the South Carolina Department of Archives and History for the Historic Ricefields Association Inc., [2001?]

 

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