Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program Winners
Three members of the Young Naturalists 4-H Club competed in the N.C. 4-H Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program competition in Wayne County on May 18. Emma Wilkie earned second place as a senior individual (age 14-18) and Maggie McCall earned first place as a junior individual (age 11-13). Colin Brown, age 8, also did a great job! Congratulations to these individuals and their coach and 4-H club leader, Ranae Worrell!
Young Naturalists 4-H Club members help each other prepare for the competition by bringing items for the Foods Test and photos of wildlife, and quizzing each other. Participants need to know what wild animals eat, and be able to identify the foods. They also need to be able to identify wildlife, their common names (including correct spelling), and the habitats that they prefer. They learn to interpret aerial photographs. They learn how to encourage wildlife to come into an area, and how to prevent specific animals from causing problems in an area. According to Renee Strnad, Environmental Educator with the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources at NC State University, “WHEP is a national 4-H program that: teaches 4-H’ers about the fundamentals of wildlife management, brings 4-H’ers together to develop team skills, promotes and develops leadership skills among 4-Hers, and provides an opportunity for 4-H’ers to work with natural resource professionals. Although WHEP is a competitive event, its primary purpose is to increase participant’s knowledge of wildlife management while promoting life skills.” Learning these skills now will help these young people be good stewards of wildlife throughout their lives.
More information about the Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program.