A Visit to the Donnelley WMA and the South Carolina Aquarium; 1-2 August 2021

On Sunday afternoon, I left Savannah and visited the Donnelley WMA in Green Pond, SC on my to Charleston, where I overnighted and visited the South Carolina Aquarium on Monday morning before returning to Savannah. I had planned on fitting in some aircraft spotting at Joint Base Charleston/Charleston IAP while I was there, but it was just too oppressively hot for that. I did find a spot out of the heat to listen to the Boeing Charleston DMR TRS and try to suss out the systems frequency LCNs, though. On this visit, I decided to listen to the Aquarium by scanning its frequencies while I visited; what I heard is listed below

Donnelley WMA

Sunday’s visit to the Donnelley WMA yielded very little in the way of wildlife sightings. I saw a few alligators, a handful of egrets and herons, and a Roseate Spoonbill, but all were too far away to get good photos. For the most part, everything was hiding out from the extremely high heat indexes. I did take a few landscape photos and stopped by the Boynton Farm House, which was built in the early 1900s by the Boynton family, who raised cattle on part of the land that became the WMA. It’s dilapidated and decaying, but it has some beautiful features, including the scalloping and woodwork on the gables.

South Carolina Aquarium

On Monday morning, I went to the South Carolina Aquarium in downtown Charleston. The previous week was a stressful one and a visit to the aquarium is always a great way to relax. The photos below are Liberty, the Aquarium’s Bald Eagle, Phoenix, the Aquarium’s American Kestrel, Moon Jellies, Lions Mane Jellyfish, and the Great Ocean Tank. I also included a video of the Great Ocean Tank below the photos. I hear some complaints that the ticket prices at the Aquarium are high for its size, but visiting the Aquarium is not only a great way to relax, it’s a great way to support their missions of conservation and Sea Turtle rescue/rehabilitation. Neither are inexpensive endeavors.

On this trip to the South Carolina Aquarium, I also did what I’ve been doing on my recent Zoo visits – I listened to them. The frequencies that they’re licensed for are 451.4000, 451.6250, 451.8500, 452.2000, 452.6750, and 452.8750. The only three frequencies I heard in use while I was there where 451.4000, 451.6250, and 452.8750. All three were easily heard throughout the downtown area as well as across the river in Mount Pleasant. All three were using DCS 245. 451.4000 seemed to be an administrative channel with communications about a variety of topics. 451.6250 seemed to be used by Guest Services. 452.8750 was easily the most interesting one to listen to, it seemed to be used by the Aquarists and Veterinary staff for keeping and care; if you decide to listen while you visit, it will be the frequency you want to listen to.

451.4000 (DCS 245) - South Carolina Aquarium Admin
451.6250 (DCS 245) - South Carolina Aquarium Guest Services
452.8750 (DCS 245) - South Carolina Aquarium Aquarists/Vets?

Boeing Charleston DMR TRS

While I didn’t get to take any aviation photos due to the heat, I did get a chance to listen to the Boeing Charleston DMR TRS. It’s not a wide coverage system, you can’t hear it very far from the Boeing facility at Charleston IAP. That said, it could be quite useful for spotters who like to track the Boeing 787s. The frequencies licensed to Boeing Charleston (WQQC713) are 461.3500, 461.3750, 461.5875, 461.7000, 461.8250, 461.8500, 461.9500, 463.4500, 463.5250, and 463.7000 but the only ones I heard in use while I was monitoring were 461.3750, 461.7000, 461.8250, and 461.9500; they’re listed by LCN below. The systems isn’t extremely active with TG 240 being the most active talkgroup that I heard.

Boeing Charleston DMR TRS Frequencies/LCNs 
 461.950 - LCN 1
 461.375 - LCN 2
 461.700 - LCN 3
 461.825 - LCN 4

Boeing Charleston DMR TRS Talkgroups
 TG 29 - Boeing Security Dispatch
 TG 181 - Unknown
 TG 200 - Unknown
 TG 240 - Unknown

I had some great meals on both days of this trip. On Sunday afternoon, I had a late lunch at Istanbul Shish Kabob in North Charleston. It was my first time eating Middle Eastern food and I tried the Lamb Kabob. It was delicious; the lamb was charcoal grilled, tender and juicy, and it was served with savory rice and a cucumber/tomato salad. It also came with bread and several spreads/dips. I thoroughly enjoyed my meal and Istanbul Shish Kabob has joined my list of places to eat when I visit Charleston. After visiting the Aquarium on Monday, I walked down the street from the Aquarium Parking Garage to East Bay Deli Downtown and enjoyed a Citadel – turkey, ham, bacon, swiss, and cheddar with lettuce, tomato, and honey mustard on wheat toast.

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