The NC Wildlife Resources Commission’s State Fair exhibit is located between the Old Farm Machinery Building and the Children's Barnyard, across from the Village of Yesteryear. This year's exhibit will feature the Commission’s game land program and prescribed burning. The exhibit will showcase the techniques and benefits of prescribed fire on Commission-owned public game lands. Attendees can learn about the various species that thrive in habitats that have been improved by prescribed fire, including wild turkey and a host of songbirds. Be sure to learn about all the fun outdoor activities that are available on the Commission’s public game lands, including hunting, hiking, nature photography, bird watching, horseback riding and more.
This year’s State Fair wildlife button, a favorite collectible for fair attendees since 1981, will feature the Henslow’s sparrow. One of the rarest in the nation, this sparrow is a species of special concern in North Carolina. These small songbirds prefer to make their nests near grasslands among dead weeds and shrubs. Though they typically breed in northeastern states, Henslow’s sparrows can be seen nesting at the Commission’s newly-acquired Voice of America Game Land in Beaufort County.
As always, visitors of all ages can practice their aim at the pellet gun range and learn about firearms safety from Wildlife Enforcement Officers. Also be sure to stock up for holiday gift-giving at the on-site Wild Store with new baseball cap and tee-shirt designs, along with the 2018 Wildlife Calendar and Wildlife in North Carolina magazine subscriptions.
As part of celebrating the 70th year of the Wildlife Resources Commission, be sure to register for your chance to win a fishing trip courtesy of Carolina Outdoor Journal host Joe Albea! The winner will have their choice of three different excursions: River fly fishing for striped bass with Capt. Mitchell Blake, Piedmont lake fishing with Capt. Greg Griffin, or a mountain river float trip for trout with Ollie Smith. The exhibit will be open from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. daily, except Thursday, Oct. 12, when the exhibit opens at 3 p.m. All activities are free.