Rudy Mancke, the popular host of SC Public Radio’s NatureNotes, died Nov. 7, 2023, at age 78.

Rudy Mancke, a South Carolina naturalist and popular host of South Carolina Public Radio’s NatureNotes and SCETV’s NatureScene, died Tuesday night, his wife confirmed.

He was 78.

Mancke’s wife, Ellen, told SC Public Radio Wednesday that her husband had managed symptoms of liver disease in the last several months and was recently hospitalized.

Ellen Mancke said her husband died surrounded by his whole family.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been finalized.

“The thing about Rudy Mancke that was so impressive was that he knew so much about so many different elements of South Carolina’s environment,” said Sammy Fretwell, The State newspaper’s longtime environment reporter. “He could tell you about the smallest plants, the largest animals. He just was an incredible resource for this state, and his death is going to be a real loss.”

Mancke, a naturalist in residence at the University of South Carolina, was an institution in South Carolina and a beloved and well-known voice on SC Public Radio and SCETV for decades.

He showcased his love and curiosity for nature daily on SC Public Radio’s NatureNotes program and SCETV’s NatureScene, which launched in 1978 and ran for 25 years with co-creator Beryl Dakers and, later, Jim Welch.

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Source: SC Public Radio by Maayan Schechter

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