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NCangler
10-05-2005, 10:36 AM
RALEIGH, N.C. (Oct. 4) - Deer devouring your daylilies? Raccoons rummaging through your rubbish? Snakes slithering in your garden?

Wildlife in your backyard can be a thrilling - or chilling - experience. Get tips on living in harmony with urban wildlife at the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission's State Fair exhibit in October.

The "Living with Wildlife" exhibit will offer visitors suggestions on how to coexist peacefully with the many creatures that have adapted well, perhaps too well, to the lawns, gardens and pools that have displaced so many fields, forests and streams.

Stroll down the handicapped-accessible boardwalk to view wildlife scenes familiar to many urban dwellers, including squirrels dining from a bird feeder, Canada geese grazing on the golf course and coyotes stalking livestock. Find out how to protect fisheries from unauthorized stockings. Learn what makes a shoreline healthy for both animals and humans.

"As communities grow and wildlife habitats shrink, learning to live with urban wildlife and sharing habitats becomes even more critical," said Glenn Kimbrell, a Wildlife Commission fisheries technician who is overseeing construction of the fair exhibit. "The Wildlife Commission hopes that by highlighting this important topic at the N.C. State Fair, we can get people thinking and talking about better ways to resolve human-wildlife conflicts while continuing to allow wild creatures to live in their own home areas."

In keeping with this year's theme, the wildlife button - a free, traditional state fair keepsake - features the beaver, a rodent whose ability to alter the landscape has made it both friend and foe to humans.

Wildlife Commission biologists, educators and administrative staff will answer questions, provide literature and staff the N.C. WILD Store where visitors can purchase posters, subscribe to Wildlife in North Carolina magazine or buy the Wildlife Commission's award-winning calendar.

Wildlife officers from the Enforcement Division are staffing their free air rifle range where visitors not only get opportunities to interact with officers in person, but also learn more about firearms safety from trained professionals. They also will staff the Sensory Safari, a hands-on exhibit of pelts, taxidermy specimens and animal bones.
More Information

The state fair will open Oct. 14-23. Fairground gates will be open from 8 a.m. until midnight daily, but the Commission's tent, which is located downhill from the Holshouser Building, will be open to the public 9 a.m. until 9:30 p.m.

The fairgrounds are located at 1025 Blue Ridge Road in Raleigh. State fair staff can be contacted at (919) 821-7400. General information can be obtained from the state fair Web site, www.ncstatefair.org.