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Rules and Regulations

There are a lot of fun, interesting, and educational things you can do on the refuge. Keep in mind, if an activity is not wildlife related and doesn't help in the protection or understanding of wildlife or their habitat, there are probably refuge rules governing this activity. Please check with the refuge management before participating in an activity that could harm the environment or yourself. There are plenty of activities at Bill Williams River National Refuge for you to enjoy. Be safe and have fun!

  • The Bill Williams River National Wildlife Refuge is a No Wake Zone.
  • Personal watercraft (PWC), such as Jet Ski, Waverunner, Sea Doo, Air boats, etc. are not permitted on refuge waters.
  • Motorized Boats can be launched from Take Off Point, a mile below the Visitor Center on Parker Dam Road.
  • Canoes, kayaks, and non-motorized boats may be launched at the Visitor Center.
  • Persons fishing from a boat or other floating object must obtain, possess, and carry a valid Arizona fishing license.


  • Hunting is permitted on Bill Williams River National Wildlife Refuge for mourning and white-winged dove, Gambel's quail, and cottontail rabbit with shotguns only. Desert bighorn sheep is also allowed on the refuge with the use of a special state permit.
  • The public hunting area is generally described as south of the Bill Williams Road (a.k.a. Planet Ranch Road) and east of Arizona State Rt. 95 plus the south half of Section 35 T 11N-R 17W as posted.
  • Persons may only use (discharge) firearms in accordance with refuge regulations (50 C.F.R. 27.42 and specific refuge regulations in 50 C.F.R. Part 32).
  • You may possess only non-toxic shot while hunting.
  • Target practice and "plinking" are not permitted.


  • The Bill Williams River National Wildlife Refuge offers three accessible fishing structures on the peninsula adjacent to our visitor center. 
  • Fishing for striped and largemouth bass, catfish, bluegill, and others, is allowed on the refuge (all Arizona fishing regulations apply).
  • Razorback suckers and bonytail chub are protected species and must be released immediately. If caught, report catch to refuge staff!


  • All vehicles must remain on designated roads.
  • Maximum speed limit is 25 MPH, unless otherwise posted.
  • All vehicles and operators must be licensed and insured for highway travel, for example: OHV's and ATC's must be "street legal" per the registrations of the state in which they are registered.

Help Us Protect the Refuge

  • Camping is not allowed on the refuge, but visit nearby Bureau of Land Management areas or States parks for excellent camping opportunities.
  • Fires are not permitted on the Bill Williams River National Wildlife Refuge.
  • Pets must be leashed and under control at all times.
  • Disturbance and collection of all plants, animals, minerals, and historic objects, is prohibited except by special use permit. 

For further information, please visit the following websites:

Code of Federal Regulations for USFWS (50 CFR)- 

Bill Williams River NWR Specific Section of CFR-

AZ Fishing Regulations-   

AZ Hunting Regulations-

AZ Boating Regulations- 

AZ OHV Regulations-

AZ State Trust Land-

Help Protect Your National Wildlife Refuges. 
To report crimes against resources, please call the Phoenix Interagency Dispatch at 1-800-637-9152. 
Report Vandalism, Dumping, or Suspicious Activity.


Last Updated: Feb 17, 2015
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