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  • Special Use Permits

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issues permits under various wildlife law and treaties at a number of offices throughout the country.  Permits enable the public to engage in legitimate wildlife-related activities that would otherwise be prohibited by law.  Service permit programs ensure that such activities are carried out in a manner that safeguards wildlife.  Additionally, some permits promote conservation efforts by authorizing scientific research, generating data, or allowing wildlife management and rehabilitation activates to go forward.

    Special Use Permits may be issued by the refuge manager for commercial tour groups, research activities, special events, commercial photography and filming, or any activity not specifically permitted on this web site. If you would like to inquire about obtaining a Special Use Permit for conducting activities on the refuge, contact the  refuge manager.  If you would like to inquire about obtaining a Special Use Permit for collection for scientific research or conducting research on the refuge, contact the refuge biologist.  Or, visit the National Wildlife Refuge System Web site for more general information on Special Use Permits.

    Permits are handled by permitting programs in International Affairs (Management Authority), Endangered SpeciesLaw Enforcement, and  Migratory Birds.

    Visit the National Wildlife Refuge System web site for Special Use Permits.

    For more detailed information, go to How to Obtain a PermitFAQs/Facts or Application Forms.

  • Waterfowl Hunt Permits

    Permits are required to hunt within refuge ponds.

    Learn More
  • Passes

    A series of passes covers the entrance and standard amenity fees charged for using federal recreational lands – including national wildlife refuges.  Entrance to the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge is free.  

    Although entrance to the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge is free, the refuge offers Senior, Access, and Active Military Personnel passes at the Visitor Center in Fremont Tuesday-Sunday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.  Beginning September 1, the Visitor Center will be open Wednesday-Sunday. Please remember to bring appropriate identification.  The Visitor Center is closed on all federal holidays. It may be best to call 510-792-0222 ext. 363 before coming as staff authorized to sell these passes are occasionally in meetings or conducting programs away from the building.

    Paper versions of the Golden Age or Golden Access Passports should be exchanged for the new Senior or Access passes. However, plastic Golden Age or Access passes are valid for the pass holder's lifetime and do not need to be exchanged.

    The Senior and Access passes are good for the lifetime of the holder and make available (to the pass holder only) 50 percent discounts on some expanded amenity fees.

    Decals and hangtags are also available: decals for those who park open-topped vehicles (like Jeeps) or motorcycles at unstaffed federal recreation sites, and hangtags for those who anticipate parking closed vehicles at unmanned facilities.


    Please visit the National Wildlife Refuge System Web site for more information about passes.

Last Updated: Jul 28, 2015
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