On 25 March 1832, Audubon painted the snowy heron 9or egret). He wrote that "15th thousands were seen in the marshes and rice-fields, all in full plumage.... While in the Carolinas, in the month of April, the egret resorts to the borders of the salt-water marshes, and feeds principally on shrimps." Lehman's background shows a South Carolina plantation and includes the tiny figure of a hunter who might well be Audubon or Bachman.
Spending the spring of 1832 in Lowcountry South Carolina, Audubon spent much of his time drawing wading birds (with three exceptions). It is probably that the first bird he drew during this period was Wilson's snipe. In his description he recorded that
...while travelling eastward from Charleston, in the month of March, I found this Snipe perhaps more abundant near the Great Santee river than anywhere else. We could see them with ease from the carriage as they were walking over the rice fields.... In some fields well known to my Charleston friends, as winter retreats of the Snipe, it is shot in great numbers.... I have seen eight or ten procured by one person in a short time between that city and the raceground, which is scarcely a mile distant.
The drawing of the South Carolina rice plantation in the background is by Lehman.
It was during the spring of 1832 that Audubon and Lehman produced what is considered the finest of the South Carolina landscapes in the Birds of America — the yellowshank tatler or lesser yellowlegs. Audubon wrote,
I have presented one of these birds on the fore ground of a little piece of water a few miles distant from Charleston in South Carolina, on the borders of which, in the company of my kind friend John Bachman and others, I have spend many a pleasant hour, while resting ater fatiguing rambles in the surrounding woods.
It is generally felt today that George Lehman probably painted both the bird and the habitat near Charleston.
In December 1833, Audubon's son John drew MacGillivray's shore-finch (also known as the seaside sparrow). Audubon stated that the bird was "rather rare in South Carolina." The species continues to be extremely rare and limits its habitation to saltwater marshes and rivers. Audubon stated that
My friend Dr. Bachman informs me that none of these Finches remain in South Caorlina during the winter, and that they generally disappear early in November, when the weather is still very pleasant in maritime poritons of the state.