2013 marks the 50th anniversary of Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge, which was founded in 1963, and the 10th anniversary of several refuge events including An Evening at the Hook Lecture Series, Nature Photography Contest sponsored by the Friends of Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge, Horseshoe Crab-Shorebird Festival through a partnership with the Milton Chamber of Commerce, and Partnering to Promote Youth Fishing with the Lower Sussex Bassmasters.
To celebrate these anniversaries and to connect people with nature, many activities, programs and special events are planned. But any time is a good time to visit the refuge, which is open every day one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset in designated areas. The Visitor Center is open from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.
On weekends, the Visitor Center is open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. from December through March and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. from April through November.
Go to www.fws.gov/northeast/primehook or call 302-684-8419 to learn more about other events and programs throughout the year.
Upcoming events in April
From 10 to 11 a.m., Monday, April 8, is P.R.I.M.E. time, which stands for Preschooler Reading Initiative to Magnify the Environment. Preschoolers (and their parents) are invited to listen to a nature-based story and participate in a related activity that will help them learn about the environment.
Participation is free, but preregistration is required by calling the refuge office at 302-684-8419. Meet at the refuge auditorium.
From 7 to 8 p.m., Thursday, April 11, An Evening at the Hook Lecture Series will offer "Bat Population Studies in Delaware." Join staff from DNREC’s Delaware Natural Heritage Program and discover the fascinating world of these flying mammals. The lecture is free, open to the public and fun for the entire family. Seating is limited on a first-come, first-served basis in the refuge’s auditorium. Light refreshments are available before the lecture at 6:30 p.m.
From 10 to 11:30 a.m., Saturday, April 13, in Spring Discovery Hike, participants will experience nature while improving their observation skills and their health during this mid-spring walk with a volunteer guide. Come prepared for the weather and expect frequent stops. Binoculars will be available to borrow, or participants may bring their own. Beginner hikers are welcome. Trips are free and open to the public. Meet at the refuge office.
From 8 to 11 a.m., Thursday, April 18, is a Birding Field Trip led by volunteer birding guides. Beginners and experienced bird watchers will enjoy observing and learning about the bird species frequenting the refuge at this time of year. Come prepared for the weather and expect to walk up to a mile. Bring binoculars, a field guide and spotting scope (the leader will have spotting scopes also). Binoculars will be available to borrow. Meet at the refuge office. Trips are free, open to the public and last approximately three hours.
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. For more information visit www.fws.gov.