Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge
P. O. Box 329
Columbia, North Carolina 27925

Contact: Howard Phillips- 252-796-3004 ext 226

News Release

April 25, 2011

Bear / Wildlife Tram Tours at Pocosin Lakes NWR
Saturday, May 7, 2011

Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge and The Friends of Pocosin Lakes are sponsoring a Bear/ Wildlife Tram Tour on Saturday, May 7, 2011. The tour will be on the Pungo Unit to observe black bears and other wildlife in the wild. This is the first of several refuge tours being offered this year. These tours will focus on black bears, but we are sure to see many other species of wildlife as well. Refuge Manager Howard Phillips explained, "Part of the Fish and Wildlife Service’s mission is provide the American people with an opportunity to discover and explore these special and protected lands. "

The tours will be led by Kim Wheeler, Wendy Stanton, and Sherryreed Moore. Kim is both a refuge volunteer and the Executive Director of the Red Wolf Coalition, Inc. Wendy Stanton is the Refuge Biologist, and Sherryreed Moore is the Refuge Visitor Services Specialist. We will visit areas of the refuge with the greatest potential for seeing black bear, along with exceptional opportunities to see an array of wildlife and wildlands.“Black bears are abundant on Pocosin Lakes, and we have a tremendous diversity of other wildlife here as well,” commented Refuge Manager Howard Phillips. “Bears need large areas of contiguous habitat, and they do well in the100, 000 plus acres of pocosin wetlands we protect here.”

The two tours are scheduled as follows:

Morning Tour (6:00 – 9:00 am)
Late Afternoon Tour (6:00 – 9:00 pm)
6:00 am Registration * 6:00 pm Registration *
6:10 am Welcome & short wildlife documentary 6:10 pm Welcome & short wildlife documentary
6:30 am Tram departs for tour 6:30 pm Tram departs for tour
9:00 am Estimated return time 9:00 pm Estimated return time **

* Restrooms are available at the Maintenance Shop but there are no facilities in the tour area
** Dusk is around 8:30 pm; to be out there at the best viewing time the tram will be coming back after dark

If you love nature, come on out and join us in an open-air tram and experience nature at its fullest. Bring your camera, binoculars, bug spray, sun screen, and remember to dress for the weather, with comfortable shoes for short walks; or if walking is difficult, you are welcome to stay on the tram and enjoy the view. Please be advised that these tours maybe unsuitable for younger children, as there are very few amenities available once the 2 ½ hour tour starts. “This is the perfect opportunity for anyone who has the desire to explore the refuge and Mother Nature, as well as gain an understanding of the partnership between the Friends group and the refuge,” stated Doris Morris, Vice-President of the Friends group.

To register or for questions regarding registration details and deadlines please contact:
Jennifer Alligood, President, Friends of PLNWR, (threads920@gmail.com) 252-927-3792 or
Doris Morris, Vice President, Friends of PLNWR, 252-793-9756 (doris.morris@noolf.com)
Reservations will be taken on a first come first serve basis.

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit http://www.fws.gov/.