YOUR NATURE GUIDE
There are some 20,000 acres on The Bluff and untold thousands on the rivers and wetlands that surround it. No human in history knows every acre, plant, animal, season and nuance of this treasured land as James Walea. “Big Jay” as he is so affectionately called grew up on this land and has dedicated his life to caring for it as a naturalist and wildlife manger of the Palmetto Bluff Conservancy. A walk with Jay is a journey into wondrous worlds that come alive as our understanding grows – which plants are edible, which attract quail, where the armadillos like to forage, the pattern of the tides, the migration of birds, gators and everything that moves…this is Big Jay’s world…and to share it even for a short spell is one of the true joys of life on the Bluff.
Jay has worked at Palmetto Bluff for over eighteen years and today, as part of the Conservancy Environmental Team he works to develop, implement and manage programs relating to the environment and stewardship. He works with the development planning team, design review board, construction staff and property owners to identify and preserve natural resources. In this capacity he handles habitat identification and preservation; lot development; traditional land and forestry management; wildlife management; interface with Design Review professionals on natural resource protection/building placement; design and implementation of nature trails; and education and outreach.
Jay has also been spotted talking about armadillos at kid’s camp, telling ghost stories, putting his calligraphy skills to use for the marketing department, and singing at a wedding or two. He’s got skills.