Shannon Slocum came to North Carolina by way of Arizona, where he grew up under the tutelage of his father who was a game warden for the Arizona Game and Fish department. Being exposed to that environment as a child, and caring for many different domestic pets at home, led Slocum to work in an internship under the department in which his father made his career. Shannon would later serve as an animal control officer in Maricopa County, north of Phoenix for seven years.
In 2001, Slocum moved to the Wilmington area and began his career on Wrightsville Beach as the designated animal control officer, working closely with law enforcement officers on the island, and is now attached to the Parks & Recreation division as the Park Ranger. Much of his days are spent patrolling the beach strand and looking for anything he may find out of the ordinary, as well as investigating and answering complaints from citizens and visitors alike. Protecting areas to the very north and south of the island is imperative, because they are bird sanctuary areas.
As Park Ranger, Slocum is very visible on the beach year-round, but is a valuable asset to the community in that he diplomatically works with people to ensure that rules and regulations are being followed. Many of these are easy to follow, and he tries to educate the public on them when the situation arises. He recommends researching regulations online at http://www.townofwrightsvillebeach.com before visiting so you can avoid any conflicts and there are also signs posted at public access lanes on the beach. One important thing to remember for dog owners is that they must be on a leash from the beginning of October until the end of March but are not be allowed on the beach front during the peak season. However, service dogs are tolerated year-round.
Another task that Slocum works with the public is educating them how to take preventative measures to avoid wildlife in the area, including raccoons, opossums, foxes, and other pests like rats and mice which can be a nuisance to property owners if not addressed properly. In his interactions with the public, he says that communication is critical to creating successful relationships and works to spread his message to all members of the community.
With all these responsibilities, safety is top priority in his position. Slocum is trained in CPR and First Aid and may arrive on scene prior to other agencies on the island, in the event of an emergency. Some major enforcement issues that he assists law enforcement with are the prohibition of alcohol, glass, and smoking. It is imperative that the beauty of the community be preserved, and these are some rules that help to ensure that Wrightsville Beach continues to be a great family oriented environment for all to enjoy. If you ever have any questions about rules and regulations, you are more than welcome to contact the town and inquire. Shannon Slocum can be reached directly by phone at (910) 239-1751 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you see him around, be sure to say hello!