S.C. Sea Grant Consortium
Tidal creek.

Tidal Creeks in South Carolina

One of coastal South Carolina’s identifying features is the large number of tidal creeks, winding streams that are affected by the ebb and flow of the ocean’s tides. Tidal creek ecosystems are a vital nursery ground or permanent habitat for many species, and serve a role in protecting the shoreline from tidal flooding.

The S.C. Sea Grant Consortium provides science-based information to better understand this unique ecosystem.

Tidal Creek and Salt Marsh Ecosystem

Salt marsh guide cover.

Guide to the Salt Marshes and Tidal Creeks of the Southeastern United States

This comprehensive guide, produced in partnership by the S.C. Department of Natural Resources, S.C. Sea Grant Consortium, and Clemson Extension, provides an overview of salt marsh and tidal creek ecosystems in the southeastern United States. The guide includes information on species identification and classification, ecosystem services and threats, cultural and historical highlights, and stewardship opportunities.

Tidal Creek Habitats: Sentinels of Coastal Health

This booklet details the effects of development on tidal creek habitats and their important function in the coastal ecosystem.

Ecosystem Restoration


From Seeds to Shoreline

From Seeds to Shoreline® is South Carolina’s only salt marsh restoration program designed for students. The program trains K-12 teachers how to lead their classroom in a year-long marsh restoration.

Research Reports

Runoff Volume Sensitivities of Tidal Headwaters (2015)

Non-point source pollution from stormwater runoff associated with large-scale land use changes threatens the integrity of ecologically and economically valuable estuarine ecosystems. Beaufort County, S.C. implemented volume-based stormwater regulations on the rationale that if volume discharge is controlled, contaminant loading will also be controlled. The County sought to identify which of their tidal creeks and what portions of the creeks are most sensitive to stormwater runoff.

Tidal Creek Articles