Bird Nests and Closures Spurring Civil Disobedience at Cape Hatteras National Seashore
As more nesting plovers and oystercatchers lead to more temporary beach closures at Cape Hatteras National Seashore, it appears more folks are acting in civil disobedience to protest the closures.
The closures were authorized earlier this spring as part of a settlement aimed at finding a compromise between off-road vehicle use on the national seashore and those worried about threatened bird and turtle species being endangered by that traffic.
Of course, not everyone supports that settlement. Acts of vandalism and civil disobedience might be doing more harm than good for ORV enthusiasts, though, as the settlement allows the National Park Service to extend the size of closures when vandalism occurs.
Rangers on June 4th closed another section of the park beach due to a plover hatch. On Thursday, June 5th, several visitors expressed opposition to this closure. One person deliberately entered the area and was dealt with by law enforcement personnel.
Meanwhile, the size of another closed area was expanded due to an oystercatcher hatch.
On Friday, June 6th, the seashore reports that two people entered a closed area and were contacted by protection rangers. Uniformed personnel were stationed at Ramp 43 during peak visitor use hours over the weekend to prevent intrusions and provide information. A special use permit was granted for a group of 50 people who are opposed to the consent decree for a social event at Ramp 43. There were no incidents.