In this video, Curtis Smalling, Important Bird Area Coordinator for Audubon NC, takes you on a tour of the Pungo-Pocosin Lakes Important Bird Area (IBA).
This area is home to tens of thousands of wintering waterfowl including upwards of 100,000 Snow Geese, Tundra Swans, and other waterfowl. The site supports 80,000 to 100,000 waterfowl during an average winter. Common Mergansers winter regularly on Lake Phelps, and on several occasions over 200 individuals have been reported, representing 80 percent or more of the state's wintering population. The area is also home to wildlife such as bobcat and black bear. Pocosin habitat likely provides very good habitat for species such as Worm-eating Warbler, Swainson's Warbler, Prothonotary Warbler, and other landbirds, but no population estimate is available.
Easily accessible through the Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge and Pettigrew State Park, this site is a popular birding and hunting destination. Audubon North Carolina and a variety of partners have worked diligently to protect this IBA from the ill-conceived Navy Outlying Landing Field and are currently working to protect the IBA from adverse effects of potential wind energy development. Learn more at www.ncaudubonblog.org.