Boating Education Course offered

In North Carolina, any person born on or after January 1, 1988 must complete a NASBLA-approved boating education course before operating any vessel propelled by a motor of 10 HP or greater on public waterways.

The course is free but pre-registration is required. It will be offered at Neuse Sport Shop in Cedar Point on August 11 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information or to sign up, go online to www.ncwildlife.org and click on the scrolling “Boating Education Courses” tab at the bottom of the home page.

3-D archery tournament

The Roanoke Archers will host a 3-D archery tournament at their range on August 17 with registration from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The site is on Longridge Road, about 1 mile outside Plymouth. N.C. (Look for signs.) Contact Brian Conner at 252-325-0335.

Oriental Harbor certified as clean marina

The 110-slip Oriental Harbor Marina is the latest facility to be certified as a North Carolina Clean Marina, the N.C. State Department of Environmental Quality announced recently.

The marina, in Pamlico County where Green and Smith creeks flow into the Neuse River, was certified June 14 and now flies the Clean Marina Flag.

To earn the Clean Marina designation, participating marina operators must complete an evaluation form about their use of specific best management practices and prepare spill-prevention plans to protect water quality. They must also control

boat maintenance activities and incorporate safety and emergency planning for their facilities, according to the Division of Coastal Management, which oversees the voluntary program.

Hunter Education course

The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission’s Hunter Education course, required of all newly-licensed hunters, will be offered on Saturday, Aug. 10 at the Craven County Cooperative Extension Office in New Bern from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

It will be taught on the same date at the Aurora Fire Department from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and on Aug. 11 at the Maysville Volunteer Fire Department from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

There is no charge but preregistration is required. For more information or to sign up, go to the Wildlife Commission’s web site - www.ncwildlife.org - and click on the scrolling “Hunter Education” banner at the bottom of the home page.

Wildlife Commission offers tips on “orphaned” squirrels  

Biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission’s Wildlife Helpline

are seeing an influx of phone calls from concerned citizens who think they have found “orphaned” baby squirrels and want to know what to do.

Their advice is, if a baby squirrel has fallen out of the nest, leave it alone for a time to give the female ample opportunity to retrieve it. It is unlikely the mother squirrel will abandon her young, even if the nest has fallen out of the tree or has been destroyed.

“It’s a myth that most animals will abandon their young if they’ve been touched by humans,” said Falyn Owens, the Commission’s extension biologist. “Unless you have been advised to do otherwise by a wildlife rehabilitator, leave the squirrel

where you found it. You can check back every hour or so but avoid ‘hovering’ as your immediate presence likely will keep the female away.”

Owens cautions that it may take several hours for the female to return and retrieve her young, particularly if the nest has been destroyed and she needs to construct a new one. “If this is the case, a wildlife rehabilitator may advise you to

place the young squirrel in an open box near where you found it to keep it safe and warm until the female is ready to return it to the nest,” Owens said. Dogs and other pets should also be kept away from the area until the young animal is retrieved.

In cases where an animal is noticeably sick or injured, it may be best to visit www.ncwildlife.org/Have-A-Problem online or call the Commission’s Wildlife Helpline toll-free at 866-318-2401. The phone line is accessible Monday through Friday (except holidays) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.