The Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge is asking the public for input on the possible reopening of Bayside Drive in regard to the impact of vehicular traffic on the area’s ocelots.
Refuge officials have been working with the Federal Highway Administration to develop a proposal to modify the drive, hoping to reduce the risk to ocelots from vehicle collisions, while still allowing visitor access.
The proposal includes changing the entrance to a location that is less used by ocelots; constructing several wildlife crossings for ocelots and other wildlife to pass under the road; keeping a section of the tour loop closed to vehicles; and widening the remaining road where needed to allow two-way traffic.
To evaluate the environmental impacts of the alternatives, an environmental assessment has been drafted and is available for public comment through Oct. 15.
Comments can be emailed to Leo_Gustafson@fws.gov, with EA/Bayside Drive Project in the subject line. Or send mail to Leo Gustafson, Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge, 22817 Ocelot Rd, Los Fresnos, TX 78566.
For more information, go to www.fws.gov/refuge/laguna_atascosa.