Since all migratory bird seasons and bag limits must fall within federal guidelines, waterfowl hunting regulations cannot be presented at the WRC's January hearings when other hunting seasons and bag limits are discussed. Each year the WRC waits for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to define these guidelines before presenting North Carolina's proposed seasons at a series of August public meetings.
At each meeting, the WRC will present last year's waterfowl population, nesting and harvest data. Staff recommendations will also be provided before opening the floor to questions and comments from the public.
Hearings this year will be:
* Aug. 21: District 1 - N.C. Aquarium, Roanoke Island, Manteo; District 6 - Albemarle Courthouse; District 9 - Haywood Community College.
* Aug. 22: District 2 – New Bern Courthouse; District 5 – Alamance County Courthouse; District 8 – Morganton Courthouse.
* Aug. 23: District 3 – Louisburg Courthouse; District 4 – Elizabethtown Courthouse; District 7 – Yadkinville Courthouse.
"We strongly urge public participation in these meetings," said David Cobb, wildlife management division chief. "Public feedback helps us offer better sporting opportunities, thereby maintaining N.C.'s strong waterfowl hunting heritage."
All meetings begin at 7 p.m.