Resource Management

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Water Management

Water control is a key tool for managing the habitats used by migratory birds and waterfowl. Marshes, moist soil areas, and open water provide a resting area as well as a feeding area for waterfowl.  The refuge maintains moist soil impoundments to provide through manipulation of water levels promote food sources for waterfowl.

Prescribed Burning

Controlled fire is a very useful tool for habitat management when used under appropriate weather conditions. Fire will release nutrients back into the soil, remove undesirable vegetation, and stimulate growth of early successional plants that are eaten by a variety of wildlife. It also serves as a tool to prevent large wildfires from occurring. Once a prescribed burn has occurred, the fuels from the land will have burned and will not burn again, or will not burn as intensively compared to lands that were not burned.  Prescribed fire is a tool used on Currituck NWR to maintain healthy habitats for wildlife.

Critical Habitat Areas

The Corolla Wild Horse, a feral mammal, is not a natural component of the barrier island ecosystem and its activities negatively impact native species. The Service actively manages critical habitat areas by erecting fences to keep the nuisance animals out and to prevent habitat damage. The area north of Corolla to the Virginia State line has been designated as a Wild Horse Sanctuary by county ordinance. Since this area encompasses Currituck NWR, the Refuge Manager participates in regular meetings of the Corolla Wild Horse Advisory Board as a landowner representative.