RALEIGH —The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission has halted target shooting at the Holly Shelter and Stones Creek game lands, citing habitat destruction and public safety concerns.
The commission today issued an advisory notifying the public of the ban, which is effective immediately. Holly Shelter and Stones Creek game lands encompass nearly 67,000 acres in Pender and Onslow counties and are popular destinations for hunters, anglers, birders, hikers and other outdoor enthusiasts.
The Wildlife Commission will enforce entry onto Holly Shelter and Stones Creek game lands for the purpose of target shooting as trespassing.
The commission plans to build a shooting range at Holly Shelter Game Land for target shooters. The shooting range, which will feature a 200-yard rifle range and a pistol range, is in the final permitting stages. Officials anticipate the shooting range will be completed this summer.
The commission recently passed a new management plan for Holly Shelter that banned target shooting starting May 1. But indiscriminate shooting throughout those two game lands has resulted in significant habitat destruction and created an unsafe environment for game land visitors and homeowners who live near the game lands, the commission said in a statement released today.