Climate Change
Southeast Region

Profile: Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge


Quick Facts
  • Blue circle with an A and Adaptation to designate project as an adaptation project
    Location: Charleston County, South Carolina
  • Size: 66,267 acres
  • Main Objectives: Provide habitat for waterfowl, shorebirds, wading birds, and resident species. There are over 277 species of birds found on the refuge.
  • Open to the public: Yes
  • Website:
  • Climate Change Threat: sea level rise and loss of saltwater impoundments

"There's Nothing Level About Sea Level" - the video

Featuring Raye Nilius and Kevin Godsea. Video by Jennifer Strickland.
Video is public domain and may be downloaded, copied, distributed, and/or reposted.


Dive Deeper: Read the Story

Thumbnail of a turtle basking in a sunset "... Once the sea begins creeping into Jack’s Creek, the freshwater pond will transform to saltwater marsh. That will mean the loss of habitat diversity, the biological equivalent of big-box stores pushing out the mom-and-pop shops on Main Street. Ducks and geese that now find food on the island will have to look elsewhere."

Read the full story

Graphs and Data

Trends in Sea Level Rise for Charleston, South Carolina

The sea has risen more than 1 foot in 100 years near the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge, near Charleston, SC, according to NOAA. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 2007 report projects sea level will continue rising at even more rapid rate.


More photos from Cape Romain are available on Flickr:
USFWS/Southeast's South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative photoset USFWS/Southeast's South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative photoset

A four photo image depicting an island going from quite large to almost invisible
The disappearing island at Cape Romain. Click for a larger view.

Raye Nilius smiles broadly
Raye Nilius, South Carolina Lowcountry Refuges Complex Project Leader. Photo by Stacy Shelton, USFWS.

Last updated: March 2, 2011