Most areas of Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge will remain closed to the public until extensive assessment for damage and repairs can be complete, the refuge announced Friday afternoon, Nov. 2.
Wildlife Drive and Visitor Information Center in Galloway, Holgate Beach on Long Beach Island, and the deCamp Wildlife Trail in Brick were all impacted by Tropical Storm Sandy, according to the refuge.
According to the refuge, water crested over Wildlife Drive, causing significant damage. Trails adjacent to Wildlife Drive and the Visitor Information Center are closed until public safety can be ensured, according to the refuge.
Other areas of the 47,000-acre refuge will be re-opened as soon as possible, according to the refuge.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which manages Forsythe, has partnered with the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife to expand patrol coverage in refuge hunt areas following the storm, according to the refuge.
Hunters with valid permits for refuge deer management zones may hunt according to existing regulation. However, the refuge reminds them to be careful of storm-damaged trees. Migratory bird hunters may also hunt within the refuge’s migratory bird hunt unit, and should be aware that the storm may have deposited underwater debris and altered salt marsh topography, according to the refuge.
Updates on refuge status may be found on the refuge Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/ForsytheNWR . For more information, contact the refuge at (609) 652-1665 or visit www.fws.gov/northeast/forsythe/ .
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. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov/northeast .