Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Pocosin Lakes

Trying to plan my upcoming trip, I was curious as to whether the waterfowl migration had begun. I sent an email to the Fish and Wildlife Service in the area and shortly received an informative email back which I much appreciated. A few swans, geese and ducks have started coming in this week. Recommended prime viewing in between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Works great with the timeline I was aiming for.

Last year when I visited it was in April and the migratory waterfowl had long since left. There were however lots of Glossy Ibis, White Ibis and Great Egrets. My first time seeing a Glossy Ibis so I was thrilled. I did learn one lesson. I was taking pictures out of the car window and did not realize how much the vibrations would affect the photos. This upcoming trip...turn the car off.

Pocosin Lakes NWR is located in eastern North Carolina on the Albemarle-Pamlico Peninsula and was established in 1990. Tens of thousands of tundra swans, snow geese and a variety of ducks find winter sanctuary in the refuge each year.

The area is also home to the largest population of black bears in North America. The red wolf that was delcared extinct in 1980 was reintroducted into the wild in 1987 on this peninsula. It is the only mainland site in the world for the wild red wolf population.

In the Pocosin Lakes area, there are six major water bodies that are adjacent to or surround the NWR. They are the Scuppernong River, Pungo Lake, New Lake, Alligator River, the northwest and southwest forks of the Alligator River and Lake Phelps. Lake Phelps is the second largest natural lake in North Carolina.

Pungo NWR was established in 1963 and encompassed 12,000 acres and is adjacent to Pocosin Lakes NWR. Pungo NWR combined with Pocosin NWR and became the Pungo Unit of Pocosin Lakes. Both now encompass 110,000 acres.

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