I see smoke! Are the game lands on fire?

I see smoke! Are the game lands on fire?

Most likely, yes. We’re now in the “prescribed burn” season—late winter and spring.  The Commission uses controlled, low-level flames to restore and maintain wildlife habitat on most of the 2 million acres of state game lands used by hunters, anglers and wildlife watchers.

In North Carolina, prescribed burning is commonly conducted between January and March, when most trees are less active metabolically. Repeated burns conducted during the spring growing season eventually kill hardwood sprouts, allowing a diversity of native grasses, herbs and wildflowers to develop. These herbaceous plants are typically more valuable than hardwood sprouts for food and cover for wildlife. Without prescribed burns, wildlife in some habitats may experience low reproduction and eventual displacement. READ MORE

 

Friday, February 10, 2017/Author: NCWRC blogger/Number of views (12561)/Comments (2)/

Why Not Open Wild Turkey Season Earlier?

Why Not Open Wild Turkey Season Earlier?

Each year, hunters hear turkeys gobbling prior to the opening of the spring gobbler season and express interest in opening the season earlier. As a result, managers are often pressured to set earlier opening dates for spring gobbler seasons. But, according to Kennamer’s research published in 2006, “the consequences of early hunting seasons may create scenarios that harm turkeys and turkey hunting more than hunters realize.” The whole premise of a spring gobbler season — of it being biologically sound to hunt gobblers in the spring — is based upon harvesting birds after breeding has occurred. Gobblers play no part in nesting or brood rearing. Their role is breeding. After breeding, they are not vital to the incubation and brood-rearing phases of reproduction and many can be harvested without negatively impacting the population. The onset of nesting is widely cited as an important, biologically based criterion for setting opening dates for spring...
Thursday, April 2, 2015/Author: NCWRC blogger/Number of views (9957)/Comments (0)/

The Legendary Cat of the Mountains and the Swamps is Just That, a Legend

The Legendary Cat of the Mountains and the Swamps is Just That, a Legend

Written by: Brad Howard Have you seen this picture in an email or on Facebook lately?  We have! This photo has been passed around to numerous folks over the last month with claims that it has been taken in various locations across North Carolina.  More recently, some attention was given to a few reports of “a black panther” in Stokes County. There were no photographs or other verifiable evidence to support those reports. While very rare, jaguars, leopards, the jaguarundi and even bobcats can have black coats but there has never been a documented occurrence of a melanistic phase (black) cougar in North America. So, any report of a “black panther” or a “large black cat” is most likely mistaken identity since only the above-mentioned cats have a black phase and only one of those cats is native, the bobcat. The black phase in bobcats is extraordinarily rare. Determining if it were a bobcat would not be that hard. While...
Thursday, October 31, 2013/Author: NCWRC blogger/Number of views (38870)/Comments (0)/

Wildlife Mythbusters

Wildlife Mythbusters

Joe Schmoe knows a guy who knows guy whose brother was a game warden who swears when he was on staff at the Wildlife Commission, biologists dropped dozens of rattlesnakes from helicopters. Many folks tell this story. Sometimes, the story is “legitimized” by adding details:  Wildlife dropped the snakes (with parachutes?) to control the deer population, and the rattler-stocking project was conducted under the cover of night from black, stealth helicopters to stay off the public’s radar screen. Still others weave a tale of biologists wanting to replenish a dwindling population of rattlesnakes in Hanging Rock State Park. Sounds exciting. Unfortunately — or fortunately, depending on how much you like snakes — it’s not true. This is one of a few rumors that circulate around North Carolina, despite the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission’s  persistent efforts to quash them. Some also believe the Commission released...
Thursday, January 5, 2012/Author: NCWRC blogger/Number of views (6406)/Comments (0)/

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