A new addition to the National Wildlife Refuge System

Brussels, Ill.- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and  U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will host a half day  paddling event to Clarksville Island in the Mississippi River beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, July 21.

The event will be held to celebrate the recent addition of Clarksville Island to Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge and in conjunction with the Summer of Paddling 2012.

Led by park rangers, participants of the paddling event will have the opportunity to explore the island by boat and foot. Participants may see many nesting birds that take refuge on the island during the summer months, or mammals such as beaver and otter that live there year round.

The island is situated immediately downstream of Lock and Dam 24 at Clarksville, Mo. Under the Service’s conservation mission the island’s wildlife and plant resources are now protected for present and future generations of Americans.

Two Rivers Refuge staff is currently evaluating public recreational uses to be allowed on Clarksville Island. This process includes gathering input and comments from stakeholders and the general public. During the paddling event participants will have the opportunity to provide input on public use on the island.

Wildlife dependent recreational uses are currently allowed on the island in accordance with existing Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge plans and regulations. Those uses include wildlife viewing, photography, environmental education and interpretation.

Paddling equipment will be provided at no cost. Meet at the Clarksville, Mo. boat landing. This event is intended for intermediate paddlers. Paddlers must be strong enough to cross the main channel of the river. All paddlers must be 18 years or older to paddle solo. Children 15 and older
may paddle solo with a parent or guardian’s consent. Children 14 and younger must paddle with parent or guardian in a tandem kayak or canoe.

To register for the event, call Cortney Solum at 618-883-2524 or email Cortney_white@fws.gov.


Public use regulations for Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge can be found at http://www.fws.gov/refuge/two_rivers/.

For a list of local paddling events and additional information about the Summer of Paddling, visit www.SOP2012.org.

 

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