When the Untamed Lowcountry blog was launched more than a year ago, one of the first regular features was weekly galleries of reader-submitted photos depicting Lowcountry wildlife and nature. Karen Marts of Hilton Head Island has been among the most enthusiastic of photo contributors, and she recently began submitting short videos, as well.
This week, we are starting a new, occasional feature highlighting one of our frequent contributors, and Marts seemed like a natural to lead off.
Name: Karen Marts
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Lowcountry residence: Marts moved to Hilton Head Island 27 years ago from Pensacola, Fla., where she had resided for two years. She was born in Newton, N.J., and also has lived in Reno, Nev., and on a small farm in Louisiana.
Favorite Lowcountry outdoors activity: Birdwatching. On her days off, Marts often visits Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge, Sea Pines Forest Preserve, Fish Haul Creek Park and Mitchelville Beach Park, Jarvis Creek Park, Savannah National Wildlife Refuge, or the Audubon Newhall Preserve. She also enjoys trips with Hilton Head Audubon Society members to Port Royal Cypress Wetlands, Bear Island and Donnelley Wildlife Management Areas, the Webb Wildlife Center, and various state parks in Florida.
Favorite Lowcountry outdoors spot: Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge, with its high concentration of birds. "It is always a rewarding experience."
Outdoors clubs and affiliations: Marts is member of the Hilton Head Audubon Society; Friends of the Savannah Coastal Wildlife Refuges; a volunteer monitor for the Sea Pines Bluebird Project; and a nature guide, trail monitor and maintenance-team member for Audubon Newhall Preserve. She has volunteered at The Oasis Sanctuary in Arizona, and Feathered Friends Forever Rescue and Sanctuary in Georgia, two of the largest parrot-rescue organizations in the United States. She adopted Freedom, a Panama Amazon parrot, 2 1/2 years ago from Feathered Friends Forever. She also writes a bird blog for Birding Friends Yahoo Group and occasionally writes for the Audubon Society newsletter.
Camera equipment: Marts said she purchased a Canon Power Shot SX50 HS last July. "This digital camera has changed my life and allowed me to film birds, mammals and reptiles from a long distance away. It has a 50X zoom optical lens, but it also allows up to 200x zoom in digital format. It has 12.1 megapixels, and I can shoot video in full HD. I read the manual for about 10 minutes and just experiment out in the field."
If you would like to submit photos or videos for publication in a future gallery, email them to Managing Editor Jeff Kidd at firstname.lastname@example.org. You must own rights to the material you submit and agree to allow us to publish them.