The following information is designed to assist freelancers who wish to write queries or submit articles, photographs and/or illustrations for publication in Wildlife in North Carolina. If you have questions not covered by these guidelines, please contact Josh Leventhal at 1712 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1712 or . We do not handle queries describing specific article ideas by telephone. Submitting queries or articles does not guarantee they will be published.


  • Please send us a brief written query before you write an article. We rarely purchase unsolicited material, and a query lessens the chance that a similar article may already be planned or recently published. A good query provides a headline that suggests the story content, a strong lead, and a summary of 300-400 words that clearly describes the premise and approach of the piece. We look for a new or seldom-done wildlife angle that matches interesting details with broad appeal. If possible, queries should be accompanied by at least two published clips related to the fields of wildlife management, natural history or outdoor recreation.
  • An assignment to submit a completed article implies no obligation until the completed article is accepted for publication.
  • We normally reply to queries within four weeks. We work four months ahead on issues, and try to plan issues 14 months in advance.

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  • We publish no poetry and very little fiction.
  • We normally purchase only first North American serial rights.
  • Most articles contain 1,800 to 3,000 words.
  • Submissions should be made as a Microsoft Word or Text document attached to an e-mail. (See “Contact the Magazine” above.)
  • Manuscripts should follow Associated Press style guidelines. Articles must conform to state and federal fishing, hunting, trapping, boating and nongame regulations.

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Writers who are thoroughly familiar with Wildlife in North Carolina are more likely to develop article ideas that interest us. Freelancers currently contribute more than half of our articles. Interviewing and quoting experts in the subject matter of your article may increase the chances of your article being published. We’d like to receive queries on a variety of North Carolina topics:
  • Fishing, hunting and outdoor recreational opportunities: These topics remain the freelancer’s best bet to break in with us. We prefer accurate how-to articles with a bright, anecdotal approach. Writers can include brief information on local color and the history of an area.
  • Natural history: Examples of subjects we have covered in the past include North Carolina’s moles, mushrooms, lightning bugs and bog turtles. Articles on game species are also welcomed. Articles may cover life cycle, traditional range, behavior and current research in a nontechnical style. Anecdotes, quotes, humor and first-person accounts may help sell your article, as will a good selection of photographs.
  • Personal essays: This is an area that requires first-rate writing skills. A writer might focus on a particular insight into the natural world, an aspect of hunting or fishing, or growing up in the outdoors.
  • Special places: We have published articles about a variety of interesting natural areas in the state, particularly those that have important or unique wildlife habitats. Examples include Carolina bays, mountain bogs, maritime forests and major rivers.
  • Conservation, environmental issues and wildlife management or research activities: Though these topics are generally written by staff, we welcome queries on endangered natural areas, pollution or other threats to wildlife or our environment of interest to our readers. Thorough research and accuracy are critical.

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We pay on acceptance for articles and article/photo packages. Articles are $400 and up for a full-length feature, and $500 and up for an article and photographs purchased as a package.


  • All photos must reflect safe, ethical and legal behavior. For example: use of blaze orange by hunters during appropriate seasons; safe handling of firearms; use of safety harnesses in tree stands; use of N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries/Sea Grant catch-and-release technique by anglers; use of personal flotation devices by children younger than 13; current boat registrations; and safe boating practices. Inland fishing, hunting and trapping regulations are available by clicking “Regulations” on the home page of this website.
  • Do not harass wildlife or violate the rights of property owners in an attempt to photograph wildlife.
  • Each photographic image should be numbered and keyed to caption information, including identification of place, date, foreground people and species. Accuracy is extremely important. Images must be accompanied by the photographer's name and address.
  • With very few exceptions, illustrations are commissioned for a specific story. Unsolicited illustrations may be submitted as part of a portfolio for consideration for future commissioned work.

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  • We accept color or black-and-white transparencies in 35 mm, 2 ¼ or large-format.
  • Digital images must be high resolution of at least 300 dpi at 4-by-6 inches.
  • We do not accept Polaroids, photocopies, low-resolution scans, framed or mounted items, newspaper or magazine clippings, or digitally manipulated photographs.

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  • Slides or other transparencies should be submitted in clear, flexible plastic sheets designed for that purpose. Digital files should be raw, RGB or high-resolution JPGs or TIFFs.
  • Cover and content page images are selected from article art. We only use exceptional images for these spots.
  • Outdoor Moment (inside back cover) is a vertical, seasonal image with open area for a quote.With few exceptions, we purchase first North American serial rights.
  • Wildlife in North Carolina retains all rights to articles and artwork in "Nature's Ways," which examines an element of an article in detail.

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  • We pay based on usage. Photographers are compensated for number and size of images published. Illustrators are paid a previously agreed-upon fee upon delivery of accepted commissioned art. Photo fees are as follows: cover, $400; contents, $250; Outdoor Moment, $200; full-page plus, $150; 1/6-page to full-page, $100; minimum $75. Each photo fee includes permission to publish the purchased image once on each of the Commission's social media platforms with proper attribution. Fees for photo essays and packages are negotiated up front.
  • Slides and prints will be returned approximately a month after publication unless otherwise arranged.
  • In the event we are responsible for loss of or damage to photographs or artwork, our liability will be limited to no more than three times Wildlife in North Carolina magazine’s current payment rate for use.


Contact WINC

Annual Photo Competition

N.C. Land Trust Map