|Fishing and Hunting Regulations|
Flint Hills National Wildlife Refuge
P.O. Box 128
Hartford, Kansas 66854
phone: (620) 392-5553
Flint Hills National Wildlife Refuge is one of a system of over 500 refuges administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and dedicated to the preservation and conservation of wildlife. Named for the Flint Hills Region just to the west, the refuge consists of 18,500 acres located on the upstream portion of John Redmond Reservoir on land owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Established in 1966, the refuge is managed primarily for migratory waterfowl. Intensive use by ducks and geese occurs during the spring and fall migration. Farmlands are managed on a share basis with area farmers with the refuge share providing food for migrating waterfowl and resident wildlife. Numerous ponds and a system of shallow marshes provide additional waterfowl habitat. Waterfowl and bald eagle management requires that portions of the refuge be closed and that public access be restricted during periods of intensive waterfowl use.
For a detailed view of the Refuge,
click here or on the map.
The Flint Hills National Wildlife
Refuge Office, located 3 blocks
west of Hartford High School and
1 block north, is open from
8 AM to 4:30 PM,
Monday through Friday.
General Refuge Regulations
PERMITTED ACTIVITIES - Wildlife observation, hiking photography, sight-seeing, boating, picnicking, and fishing. Wild food gathering and hunting are permitted in areas open to public entry. Both State and Federal laws are in effect on the Refuge.
FISHBAIT COLLECTING - Fishbait collecting (for personal use) is permitted in areas open to the public use only, and in accordance with all applicable Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks regulations. Visitors are allowed to collect live fish bait including crayfish, bait fish, frogs, leaches, etc. Worms and grasshoppers may be collected by hand from moist areas and the ground surface and from beneath leaves and natural debris on the forest floor. However, the act of digging for bait is prohibited according to 50 CFR Part 32, Hunting and Fishing, Subpart 32.35 D.2, “We only allow fish bait collecting for personal use. We prohibit digging or habitat disturbance. Therefore, digging for bait is prohibited on the refuge.
INTERPRETIVE TRAIL - Visitors are encouraged to hike on the Dove Roost Trail and the Headquarters Trail.
VEHICLES AND PARKING - Motorized vehicles are permitted only on developed roads and parking areas. The speed limit is 35 mph unless otherwise posted. Parking in front of gates, water access points, bridges, or water control structures is prohibited.Fishing and Hunting Regulations
The Refuge Office/Visitor Center is open from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays.
Hunting and fishing hours follow those set in the Kansas State hunting and fishing regulations.
Motorized vehicles (except ATVs and snowmobiles) are permitted only on roads that are graveled or paved and parking areas. The speed limit is 35m.p.h. unless otherwise posted. Parking in front of gates, water access points, bridges or water control structures is prohibited.
ATVs and snowmobiles are PROHIBITED on ALL Refuge roads and lands.
REFUGE FISHING REGULATIONS
All Refuge waters are open to sportfishing in accordance with State fishing regulations.
All Statewide length and creel limits apply to Refuge waters.
Portions of the Refuge north of the Neosho River are CLOSED TO ALL PUBLIC ENTRY from November 1 to March 1. See map for details.
REFUGE HUNTING REGULATIONS
All Federal and State hunting regulations apply.
Hunters must possess all applicable State and Federal licenses and stamps.
Refuge hunting areas are open to the hunting of only those species with seasons set by the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, with the exception of furbearers and coyotes, which cannot be hunted or trapped.
Hunting areas north of the Neosho River are CLOSED TO ALL PUBLIC ENTRY from November 1 to March 1. See map for details.
Hunting is not permitted on the Neosho River.
Shooting from or over roads and parking areas is prohibited.
It is illegal to retrieve game from areas closed to hunting.
Bow and arrows, shotguns, muzzleloaders, rimfire rifle and rimfire pistols are permitted for Refuge hunting.
All shotgun hunters must use non-toxic shot, except for deer hunting.
Baiting and/or hunting over bait are not allowed on the Refuge.
Dogs must be under the owners control at all times. Dogs may not be used for running or harassing wildlife.
During flood conditions, boundary signs may be under water or washed away. Determining boundary location is the responsibility of the individual.
See map for hunting areas.
- Waterfowl Specific Hunting Regulations
Waterfowl hunting is permitted in accordance with State and Federal hunting regulations.
Waterfowl hunting is only allowed on the portion of the Refuge south of the Neosho River, unless posted otherwise.
Portable blinds and daily blinds made from natural vegetation are permitted. The construction or use of permanent blinds and/or pits is prohibited.
Decoys cannot be left unattended at any time.
See map for areas open to waterfowl hunting.
- Deer Specific Hunting Regulations
Archery, muzzleloader, and shotgun deer hunting are permitted in accordance with State hunting regulations, unless stated otherwise. Rifle hunting is prohibited.
The Refuge is NOT open during the extended white-tailed deer season in January.
Permanent blinds and stands are not allowed on the Refuge. Blinds and stands must be removed daily - unattended blinds and stands are subject to removal.
Nails, wire, screws, or other objects that penetrate the bark of a tree to attach a stand or support a hunter cannot be used. Hunting from a tree into which a metal object has been driven to support a hunter is prohibited. Climbing/ladder stands are allowed.
See map for hunting areas.
- Turkey Specific Hunting Regulations
Turkey hunting is permitted in accordance with State hunting regulations, unless stated otherwise.
Non-toxic shot is required for all turkey hunting. The possession of lead shot is illegal.
See map for hunting areas.
- Special Hunts
The Refuge is open to the youth waterfowl, youth upland bird and youth/disabled deer seasons.
All State and Federal regulations apply.
All Refuge specific regulations apply for these special hunts. Please refer to the specific regulations above for clarification.