National Wildlife Haven Hoping for Rain, With Money for Pumping Gone

February 25, 2006 - Posted at 12:56 p.m. CST

TURRELL, Ark. (AP) _ Rain isn't the only thing in short supply

at the Wapanocca National Wildlife Refuge in northern Crittenden


Money is also scarce, and its lack has forced refuge managers to

quit pumping water into the 600-acre Wapanocca Lake. The pumping

began in December, to compensate for the lack of natural water.

Officials say the lake's water level is likely to enter the

summer a foot or two shy of what it needs to survive the season's

heat, he said.

The pumping was the latest effort to restore the refuge to its

former status as a good place to hike, hunt and fish. About 30

years ago, silt-laden waters began to choke the life from Wapanocca

Lake. Then it lost its main water source with the rerouting of Big

Creek and the area suffered contamination and other water losses.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)