National Wildlife Refuges in Arkansas Closed By Government Shutdown

Oct 2, 2013

The White River National Wildlife Refuge is one of ten refuges closed by government shutdown.

The federal government shutdown also means the shutdown of all ten National Wildlife Refuges in Arkansas.

The closure prohibits fishing, hunting, camping, and other recreational activities on the federal lands and waters.

Keith Weaver is the project leader for the Central Arkansas National Wildlife Refuge complex. He says that a lengthy shutdown could have its consequences.

"The users will be impacted in terms of loss of opportunities to recreate. And, I think there's a spin-off in terms of businesses and revenues from visitors who are coming to a national wildlife refuge," says Weaver.

Weaver says the only activities that will continue are those pertaining to forestry management, such as pending timber sales and cooperative farming activities.

According to a memo from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, only limited functions will continue, such as those necessary to respond to emergencies and to protect human life or property.