Government shutdown affects Bosque NWR and more

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For 17 days in October, temporary barriers barred visitors from entering the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge tour loops, visitor center and trail heads; make-shift closed signs were taped on the doors of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management field office in Socorro.

The gates were locked on BLM and U. S. Forest Service campgrounds and attractions, including Fort Craig. U.S. Fish and Wildlife workers and volunteers on the Bosque del Apache refuge were sent home, jeopardizing the future of the annual Festival of the Cranes scheduled for Nov. 19 – 24.

The U. S. Congress worked out a budget agreement that put the federal government back to work.