A Message From the Chairman
North Carolina Hunting & Fishing
Dear Wildlife Stakeholders,
The year 2020 has brought about significant change for the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission with the retirement of Executive Director Gordon Myers. On behalf of the Commission and staff, I thank Gordon for his leadership of the agency and his dedication to conserving the wildlife resources and diverse habitats of this state for the enjoyment of future generations.
Major Cameron “Cam” Ingram was named the new head of the agency in June. Ingram has served in the agency’s Law Enforcement Division since 1997 and is a graduate of East Carolina University with a Bachelor of Science in Parks and Recreation and a concentration in Natural Resource Management. Given Cam’s extensive experience in various leadership roles within the agency, I am confident he will lead the Commission in a positive direction into the future.
This year has also been unlike any other due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since mid-March, North Carolina citizens, like most throughout the nation, were faced with unprecedented restrictions in their daily lives. However, a silver lining in all this has been the number of people seeking opportunities for outdoor recreation, with many North Carolinians taking advantage of the great outdoors for the first time.
Agency staff worked diligently to keep the Commission’s 92 game lands open for use during the pandemic. These lands, depending upon locality, offered and continue to offer ample access to outdoor recreational opportunities including hunting, shooting sports, fishing, hiking, trapping, horseback riding, birding, wildlife watching, boating and kayaking. Staff went to great lengths to keep as many of its hundreds of free boating access areas and public fishing access areas on more than 100 different waterbodies open to the public as possible, closing only those, as necessary, to comply with city, county or municipality ordinances. Also, worth noting in what is mostly attributed to hunters having more spare time, the 2020 spring turkey season had the highest harvest on record with 23,341 birds, far surpassing the previous record of 18,919 harvested birds set in 2017. Even during the week-long youth season, harvest increased by 110 percent over previous years.
As the days and months ahead unfold, under Cam’s leadership, the Commission will continue to actively pursue ways to increase public access to the great outdoors and encourage the public to take advantage of outdoor recreation. I encourage you to visit ncwildlife.org to learn more about the wide range of outdoor opportunities we offer and plan your next adventure.
David W. Hoyle Jr.