Cape Hatteras National Seashore: ‘Leave your fireworks at home’

Published 1:56 pm Saturday, July 3, 2021

Cape Hatteras National Seashore reminds visitors and adjacent homeowners that it is illegal to detonate fireworks or have fireworks in one’s possession on all land managed by the National Park Service, including all beaches from the Nags Head border through Hatteras and Ocracoke islands.

In addition to fireworks being illegal and a fire risk to local communities, the personal use of fireworks can be a significant nuisance to humans, pets and wildlife, stated a CHNS release.

Seashore law enforcement rangers will be patrolling the beaches throughout the Independence Day weekend.

“Visitors are encouraged to travel to the south end of Ocracoke Island or the National Park Service’s Avon Fishing Pier on Hatteras Island to view the only two permitted fireworks shows within the Seashore,” said David Hallac, superintendent of National Parks of Eastern North Carolina. “Leave your fireworks at home.”

Permitted fireworks shows are at 9:15 p.m. on July 3, 2021 at the south end of Ocracoke Island and 9 p.m., July 4, 2021 at the Avon Fishing Pier.

The Ocracoke Island tram service route now includes a stop at the historic Ocracoke Light Station. Light Station visitors are encouraged to use the free tram service because parking at the site is limited. Tram pickup locations are located throughout the village of Ocracoke and vehicle/cart parking is available at the Ocracoke Express passenger ferry location at Silver Lake Harbor.

In late summer or early fall 2021, Cape Hatteras National Seashore, in collaboration with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and North Carolina Department of Transportation, plans to open the Bonner Bridge Pier to the public for recreational use. The 1,046-foot-long remnant section of the Bonner Bridge, located next to the south end of the new Oregon Inlet bridge, will be managed by the National Park Service.

The July 1, 2021, Resource Management Field Summary shows the following count on shorebird and sea turtle nesting on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore:

American oystercatcher chicks number 18 with nine fledglings. Cape Point has two chicks and two fledglings.

Colonial waterbird chicks on the seashore number 104 with 90 fledglings.

One piping plover chick and one fledgling are at Cape Point.

Two Wilson’s plover fledglings are somewhere on Hatteras Island.

Sea turtle nests on Hatteras Island number 84, on Ocracoke Island 43, and on Bodie Island 2, for a total number of 129 nests in the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

As of July 1, 2021, Cape Hatteras National Seashore has the highest number of sea turtle nests on North Carolina beaches.

On Dare County’s northern beaches, four sea turtle nests have been located. In Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge, sea turtle nests number 16.

Before visiting the national seashore beaches, go to weather.gov/beach/mhx to view the daily rip current risk level and beach conditions forecast. Visitors can sign up to receive Outer Banks beach safety text messages by texting “OBXBeachConditions” to 77295.

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