Rusty Dennen writes about the environment and the great outdoors.
Wildlife refuge marking milestone with special events
The Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge is marking the 109th anniversary of the nation’s wildlife refuges with some special events coming up next month. They include: March 10, 9 a.m., birding and binoculars, for children 4 to 10; and at 11 a.m., how to select birding optics, for adults. Both sessions will be held at the Environmental Education Building on the refuge’s Wilna Tract. March 15, 7 p.m., history and future of the wildlife refuge system, and the Rappahannock River refuge, at the Essex Public Library. March 17, 8:15 a.m., a bird walk on the Hutchinson Tract; bluebird house building for children 3 to 12 follows at 10 a.m. at the Environmental Education Building on the Wilna Tract. Advance registration is encouraged; call 804-333-1470 for more information. Read more about the Rappahannock refuge here. A little history about the refuge system: President Theodore Roosevelt in 1903 designated Florida’s Pelican Island as the first bird preserve. Today, the system’s 555 refuges and 38 wetland management districts support at least 700 species of birds, 200 mammals, 250 reptiles and amphibians and more than 1,000 species of fish.