Free guided refuge tours under way
The J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge has received the green light from federal officials to commence this season’s free tours after an earlier pandemic freeze on refuge programming. Staff must limit the outdoor tours to 10 people or fewer.
There is no set schedule for the tours, which will run through April 11. The refuge posts its offerings weekly at dingdarling.eventbrite.com, where participants must preregister free-of-charge.
Tours include a Birding the Refuge car caravan tour, Bailey Tract Tour, Indigo Trail Walk, Bike Tour, Beach Walk, Birds of the Refuge Walk, Endangered Species car caravan tour, Mindfulness Walk, and Art Journal Walk. Participants must wear face masks and bring their own binoculars and scopes.
“We are excited to be able to once more welcome visitors to our free educational tours,” Supervisory Refuge Ranger Toni Westland said. “As mandated by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, we are observing strict compliance with CDC guidelines in the interest of everyone’s safety.”
The free educational tours are made possible through support from the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge. For safety guidelines and more information, call 239-472-1100 ext. 221 or visit dingdarlingsociety.org/articles/free-refuge-programs.