Alligator River/Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge
P. O. Box 1969
Manteo, North Carolina 27954

Contact: Bonnie Strawser - 252-473-1131

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News Release

May 23, 2012

Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge Crabbing Rodeo Canceled Due to Irene Damage

Due to a breach in the west dike of North Pond on Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge, conditions in the pond are both unsafe and impractical to support the annual Crabbing and Fishing Rodeo. Visitors and residents who would normally have participated in the rodeo are encouraged to spend the day enjoying the fishing from the Pea Island beach, walking and exploring the North Pond Wildlife Trail, observing exhibits in the Visitor Center, or just "getting outside" to watch the clouds or listen to the waves!

During Hurricane Irene last summer, a section of the west dike and the adjacent pumping station, pump shed, and service road were washed out by storm surge. The refuge is in the process of contracting the repair work; however, it is unknown at this time when the work will be completed.

"We've had the crabbing rodeo since the late 80's or early 90's," said Visitor Services Manager Bonnie Strawser. "We have a lot of folks who plan their vacations around the event each year. Lots of locals look forward to the rodeo, as well. And, we really hoped the dike repair would be done before the second Saturday in June. But, it's simply not going to happen."

"We're confident the repair work will be done before next summer, so we encourage everyone to look forward to the 2013 Pea Island Crabbing Rodeo, which will be better than ever!"

For more information about things to see and do on Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge, visit http://www.fws.gov/peaisland or call 252-473-1131.