Digging in the Dirt: June 2024 Chapter Highlights

June 6, Bolin Creek Sapling Protection Project: NCWF’s Tri-County Conservationists Chapter installed cages at Bolin Creek in Chapel Hill to protect the native plants that were installed earlier in 2024.
June 6, Bolin Creek Sapling Protection Project: NCWF’s Tri-County Conservationists Chapter installed cages at Bolin Creek in Chapel Hill to protect the native plants that were installed earlier in 2024.

North Carolina Wildlife Federation staff and Community Wildlife Chapter volunteers did a whole lot of webinar hosting, engaging kids in nature, soil exploring, mushroom meeting, wildlife watching, native planting, nest checking and more in May to promote healthy wildlife habitat and inspire people to get outside. In total, 300-plus volunteers were engaged and over 200 native plants were installed. Over a thousand people were given the opportunity to connect with nature through one of NCWF’s various opportunities this month

Thanks to partners such as the Duke Energy Foundation, Jandy Ammons Foundation, Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuary Partnership and Burt’s Bees for helping make these habitat restoration workdays, educational programs and nature outings possible. Explore our Events Calendar to discover where NCWF and our Community Wildlife Chapters are hosting in-person and virtual events near you. Check out a few highlights below from our conservation outreach team.

June 1, Merrick-Moore Community Workday: NCWF partnered with the Merrick-Moore Community Development Corporation for a workday at Mt. Zoat Missionary Baptist church. We removed invasive vines and laid out cardboard and wood chips in preparation for a pollinator garden.

June 4, Wildlife Paddle at Merchants Millpond State Park: NCWF’s Wildlife Habitat Stewards of Northeastern NC chapter hosted a ranger-guided wildlife paddle at Merchants Millpond State Park where participants enjoyed observing wildlife from the water.

June 6, Bolin Creek Sapling Protection Project: NCWF’s Tri-County Conservationists Chapter installed cages at Bolin Creek in Chapel Hill to protect the native plants that were installed earlier in 2024.

June 8, ecoEXPLORE Herpetology Walk: NCWF, Pocosin Lakes NWR, and Tyrrell County Library partnered to host an ecoEXPLORE herp walk along the Scuppernong River Interpretive Boardwalk. Participants observed a variety of turtles and lizards that call the Scuppernong River their home!

June 11, Brown Headed Nuthatch House Installation: NCWF’s South Wake Conservationists Chapter installed 3 new houses for brown headed nuthatches at the Glenaire retirement community in Cary. As part of its Wildlife Habitat program, SWC installs various structures to support wildlife, which have included turtle basking platforms, bee houses, and different varieties of birdhouses.

June 11, River Critters and Pond Pals NCWF Habitat and Wildlife Keepers Chapter enjoyed an evening of family fun at Squirrel Lake Park in Matthews. Kids and adults alike explored several aquatic habitats with Dr. Erika Young, Coastal and Marine Education Specialist for NC Sea Grant. Using nets and turning rocks, participants discovered tadpoles, frogs, crayfish, salamanders, and even dragonfly nymphs. The group discussed the importance of macroinvertebrates for clean water and enjoyed a pizza party to cap off the evening.

June 13, Chapter Mixer at Ponysaurus: NCWF hosted a chapter mixer at Ponysaurus Brewing in Durham. People interested in being a part of the Durham chapter got to mingle with each other and share what conservation projects they would like to see in their communities.

June 15, Kickoff to Summer Reading Program: NCWF and Pocosin Lakes NWR attended Tyrrell County Library’s Kickoff to Summer Reading event with tables and wildlife activities for NCWF, Pocosin Lakes NWR, and Red Wolves.

June 14, Walnut Creek Wetland Center Tour: NCWF’s South Wake Conservationists Chapter went on a tour of Walnut Creek Wetland Park in Raleigh. City of Raleigh’s Celia Lechtman served as the group’s leader on the tour. Celia shared her wealth of knowledge regarding the park’s extensive history while pointing out the abundance of flora and fauna that frequent the habitat.

June 15, Wild on the Water NCWF Charlotte Wildlife Stewards Chapter hosted their annual Wild on the Water Fundraiser for wildlife. Over 40 folks showed up for a guided paddle on Mountain Island Lake at Latta Nature Preserve. Paddlers were fortunate to see a pair of great blue herons and several active ospreys nests on the lake. Native plants in bloom included water willow, lizard’s tail, and pickerelweed. Thank you Ryan Carter, Policy Manager, with Catawba Riverkeeper for leading this paddle! All paddlers enjoyed a nice lunch courtesy of The Common Market and were entered into a raffle featuring some great prizes. Funds raised from this event will support wildlife and habitat projects across the Charlotte area including the installation of two new pollinator pitstops!

June 15, Insects at Wake Forest Juneteenth Celebration: NCWF’s Neuse River Hawks Conservationists Chapter hosted an educational program for kids all about insects at Wake Forest’s annual Juneteenth Celebration.

June 17, Pollinator Prowl NCWF Habitat and Wildlife Keepers Chapter volunteers and NCWF staff participated in the Pollinator Week 2024- Pollinator Bioblitz. Participants practiced community science using the app iNaturalist.  Folks observed leafcutter bees, American lady butterflies, bumble bees, carpenter bees, silver-spotted skippers, and more! Every observation is a data point that will help scientists, conservationists, and educators better understand the distribution and abundance of pollinators across North America.

June 18, Butterfly Highway Summer Reading Program: NCWF joined Tyrrell County Library for a program all about NCWF’s Butterfly Highway program where participants learned about how they can create their own pollinator pit stops. Participants searched for pollinators outdoors and worked together to complete a butterfly coloring puzzle.

June 18, Native Plants Sign Installation: NCWF’s Neuse River Hawks Conservationists Chapter installed a sign at the Wake Forest Senior Center. Special thanks to the Jandy Ammons Foundation for their support! The sign highlights the importance of native plants and sits in front of a wildlife garden that the chapter installed a few years ago.

June 20, Certified Wildlife Habitat Summer Reading Program: NCWF joined Tyrrell County Library for a program about how anyone can create a certified wildlife habitat. Participants designed their own plans for how they could turn both the library and their homes into certified wildlife habitats

June 22, Caswell Beach Cleanup: NCWF’s Lower Cape Fear Wildlife Chapter hosted a trash cleanup along Caswell Beach in Brunswick County.

June 22, Shelton Farm Tour: NCWF’s Southeastern Swamp Stewards Chapter hosted a tour of Shelton Farm Nursery. The group learned about Shelton Farm’s history and their effort to promote native plants in Southeastern NC.

June 22, 3rd Annual Bee Day Celebration: NCWF and other organizations involved with the Durham USA Bee City Committee hosted the 3rd annual Bee Day Celebration at Durham Central Park. In honor of National Pollinator Week (June 17 – 23), organizations promoted the importance of conserving bees and other pollinators.

June 23, Help Keep Charlotte Beautiful NCWF Charlotte Wildlife Stewards Chapter participated in their third annual Keep Charlotte Beautiful cleanup. Nine volunteers removed over 60 lbs of trash from a stretch of Tyvola Road adopted by the chapter.. Litter along the road can lead to wildlife entanglement and unnecessary vehicle collisions.

June 27, Moth Night June is National Pollinator Month and NCWF Charlotte Wildlife Stewards Chapter partnered with Mecklenburg County staff to host a Moth Night celebration at Reedy Creek. Over 20 folks showed up after sunset to learn about moths well into the night. In addition to moths, participants discovered glowworm beetles, cherry bug millipedes, forest snails, katydids and more!

June 29, Nest Box Building NCWF Gaston PAWS Chapter partnered with CarMax Gastonia to host a volunteer family work day. CarMax employees and their families spent the day at Wood Duck Farms building and prepping wood duck nest boxes. In total, volunteers built 18 boxes and cut boards for future boxes to be built. These nest boxes will enhance breeding habitat for wood ducks in Gaston County.

Written by:


– Seana Finn, Conservation Coordinator


Luke Bennett


– Luke Bennett, Conservation Coordinator


Laura Frazier


– Laura Frazier, Refuge Conservation Coordinator


Natalie Bohorquez, Director of Conservation Partnerships


– Natalie Bohorquez, VP of Conservation Partnerships


Alden Picard, Conservation Coordinator


– Alden Picard, Conservation Coordinator

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