Calling all wild horse lovers!

By Meghan Overdeep
December 04, 2019

You asked, and the National Park Service answered.

After fielding countless inquiries from the public about how to help the famed wild horses of the Outer Banks, NPS has announced new volunteer opportunity starting in 2020.

Through a partnership of Cape Lookout National Seashore, the Rachel Carson Reserve, and the Foundation for Shackleford Horses, members of the new Pony Patrol will act as ambassadors for the wild horses by “helping the public enjoy the horses safely and in appropriate ways.”

According to Cape Lookout National Seashore, Pony Patrol volunteers will roam the barrier islands talking with visitors about the horses and answering basic questions about them and their environment. Opportunities are available for both Shackleford Banks in Cape Lookout National Seashore and the islands within the Rachel Carson Reserve.

Before you get too hot to trot, this isn’t a job for everyone. Interested applicants must be at least 18 years old and “physically able to walk the beach in a dynamic setting.” We’re talking sandy terrain, extreme sun, heat, humidity, wind, and buggy environments. Pony Patrol volunteers are also expected to work four-hour shifts at least four times a month during peak visitation.

Think you’ve got what it takes? The volunteer application is available online now through January 10. Selected candidates will be contacted for an interview in mid-January. Volunteers are required to attend one of two all-day training sessions in either March or May 2020.

Giddy up, y'all!

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