State News

Closed areas along Outer Banks upset vacationers, fishermen

Posted May 6, 2008

— Fishermen destined for the Cape Hatteras National Seashore were surprised to find some of their favorite spots off limits to vehicle or foot traffic Monday afternoon.

Less than a week after a settlement was reached between environmental groups and the National Park Service, access to three areas along the Cape Hatteras National Seashore was blocked to protect nesting seabirds.

According to the settlement, when nests are present or breeding areas are in use, the park service will establish a wide buffer zone to keep vehicular and foot traffic out of those areas.

Several nests were identified Monday, and access was blocked on Bodie Island to protect an American oystercatcher breeding spot, on Cape Point to protect a least tern breeding area and on South Ocracoke to protect breeding adult piping plovers.

Two of those three spots are among the most popular with fishermen, who gathered to protest the closures Tuesday.

"We're here. This is what we love, and we're not willing to give it up all that easily," one protester, Rob Alderman, said.

"I was disheartened and it was very upsetting and I felt very defeated because I spent a lot of money and a lot of time preparing for this trip," fisherman Daniel Drumheller said.

Red drum season starts next week, and bait and tackle businesses are seeing the effects of the new restrictions, with vacationers canceling their plans.

"I spent my entire life building my business only to have it trashed," said Bob Easkes, who owns the Red Drum Bait and Tackle Shop. "I've got one employee laid off and another one we're getting ready to lay off (because of the closures)."

Park service officials say they know the closures will hurt business, but add that they are bound by the legal settlement.


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  • CraftyMo May 8, 2008


    Sorry I obviously am not as intelligent as you seem to think you are. You are very impolite and arrogant, why would I try to answer any of your questions. You have made it clear you have all the answers and will "educate" us all. I hope you can channel your anger and intellect to a more important issue in the news beyond this one.

  • sweetsea May 7, 2008

    I'd like to load some of these posters up with a cooler and minimal fishing gear and let them walk to the point or some of the areas between Rodanthe and Avon and watch them walk to the water, fish for a few hours and then walk their catch and equipment back. They would need a cell phone to call 911. The judge does not understand this and the environmental extremists don't care. I have fished the areas of Hatteras and Ocracoke Island for over 30 years and unless you have been there and done it you don't have a clue. Wrightsville Beach it is NOT. These closures will result in massive unemployment and will force a lot of lifelong island families to relocate. Tourism is 100% of the economy. Period. No factory or other jobs available. ORV users account for 75% plus. Imagine having to sit down and tell your kids that you have to move to Norfolk or someplace because bird morons and an ambitious judge ran you out. Just watch the unemployment rate, sales and occupancy tax receipts.

  • the river rat May 7, 2008

    Show me one shred of empirical evidence that the orv's at these locations are harming the birds in any way, shape or form.....just one..........

  • Finz Up May 7, 2008

    Just asking some questions there Mo....

    Just want to see how smart you are on the subject. If you can't answer them just say so.....

  • Finz Up May 7, 2008


    These folks aren't into facts. They hop up on that soapbox, hop off and go write a check to some lying lawyer that isn't into facts either. Sad thing is the facts presented before this judge didn't mean much either way. I would like to see the reaction on the faces of people that stand to lose a business when some snob looks him in the eye and says Boo Hoo

  • CraftyMo May 7, 2008

    Why are you attacking me personally? I have the right whether you feel it is right or wrong to say what I feel. I have not however attacked anyone verbally that I may not agree with. Let's place nice ok?

  • Adelinthe May 7, 2008

    Some of you act like there's no where else to fish. Get a grip!!!

    God bless.

    Rev. RB

  • rocket May 7, 2008

    "Every animal we let go, or cause to go, extinct is just one step closer to our own extinction."

    Maybe so... maybe. That statement, however, has nothing to do with this issue. No animal is in danger of going extinct due to ORVs at Cape Hatteras. How about some of you who want ORVs off the beach provide some facts or data to back up your claims. You come on here preaching "save the animals" from you soapboxes and others have nothing to say but "boohoo get over it". Is that the best you can do? If you don't have a clue what is really going on, perhaps you'd be better off finding another story to comment on.

  • russh198 May 7, 2008


  • Finz Up May 7, 2008


    How many piping plovers have been killed by fishermen on Cape Hatteras?

    Google it if need be........

    If you want to know why there are so few birds on Hatteras just ask. I will be happy to educate you on something you know NOTHING about.