NOXUBEE COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI)- Springtime is officially here, and the Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge hosted an open house along with some cool incentives.

When you see the hiking trails, wildlife, and adventure you know you’re at The Refuge.

This year The Refuge is celebrating their first place wins from the recent iNaturalist Bioblitz Challenge.

To kick off the new season and victory, visitors were welcomed to meet staff and hit the water with free canoeing and kayaking.

“It’s really a chance for the public the come ask us questions as they re-discover the refuge in the spring and just to say hello really. They just get the chance to come and talk to me and ask me questions why do you do that why don’t you do that and understand what the refuge is,” said Wildlife Manager Steve Regan.

Canoes, kayaks, life jackets, and paddles were provided for all participants.

Visitor Mary Redman says having this experience gives her relief from school work and allows her and mom to take on kayaking together.

” I went kayaking about a year ago, and this will be my first time doing it again, so I’m really excited. I look forward to seeing all the wildlife. Hopefully, I don’t bump into any alligators and don’t tip over,” said Redman.

With temperatures heating up, this event was focused on being on the water with friends and family.

Regan says regardless where you go here; you’ll be at peace.

“You’ll see it every place you go on the refuge, people just come here to unwind and kind of forget about the stresses that they deal with every day and see nature and see wildlife,” said Regan.

The two categories they won were “Most Species” with 540 species identified and “Most Unique Contributors” with 51 people providing at least five research grade records.

Categories: Local News

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