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  • Canada geese 218x116

    Canada geese

    A flock of Canada geese land at Ouray Refuge. In spring and fall, the honking of these birds fills the air throughout the day.

  • scenery Green R 218x116

    Green River

    The Green River meanders through Ouray Refuge and provides cover and food for many wildlife species.

  • porcupine 218 x 116


    If you want to see a prickly porcupine at Ouray Refuge, look up! One of the best places to see them is high up in a tree.

  • NSW owl 218x116

    Northern saw-whet owl

    Close-up of a northern saw-whet owl at Ouray Refuge. This tiny owl eats mice and is seldom seen.

  • Mule deer 218 x 116

    Mule deer

    Ouray Refuge provides important habitat for mule deer, elk, pronghorn, and an occasional moose!

Wildlife sightings at Ouray Refuge

Birds at Ouray Refuge

Snowy plover 150 x 118

The top three most common bird species seen during the bi-weekly bird survey on 7/2/14 were American coot (688), Canada geese (568), and mallard (166). We were excited to see a snowy plover with three young in Sheppard Bottom! We also saw gadwall, green-winged teal, cinnamon teal, blue-winged teal, northern shoveler, wood duck, ruddy duck, redhead, ring-necked duck, great blue heron, black-crowned night heron, snowy egret, great egret, white-faced ibis, common loon, double-crested cormorant, American white pelican, American bittern, killdeer, black-necked stilt, spotted sandpiper, Wilson's phalarope, Clark's grebe, western grebe, pied-billed grebe, eared grebe, Forster's tern, American kestrel, and turkey vulture.

About the Complex

Lower Green River Complex

Refuges in the Lower Green River Complex include Ouray Refuge, Browns Park Refuge, and the Colorado River Wildlife Management Area.

Ouray is managed as part of the Lower Green River Complex.

Learn more about the complex 

About the NWRS

National Wildlife Refuge System


The National Wildlife Refuge System, within the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, manages a national network of lands and waters set aside to conserve America’s fish, wildlife, and plants.

Learn more about the NWRS  

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What's new at Ouray Refuge

  • Unusual Sighting of a Common Loon at Ouray Refuge

    Common loon 150 x 118

    During the bi-weekly bird survey on July 2, 2014, our biologist spotted a common loon in the Leota wetland area. This is only the second time in 12 years that our biologist has seen this species on Ouray Refuge!

  • New Life at Ouray Refuge

    Long-billed curlew chick 150 x 118

    Possibly the first documented long-billed curlew young were found on Ouray Refuge recently. Whether you're seeking long-billed curlew or snowy plover chicks, Canada goose goslings, or prairie dog pups, it's the perfect time of year to glimpse young birds and mammals!

  • Proposed Oil and Gas Wells on Ouray Refuge

    Two draft Environmental Assessments (EA) on proposed oil and gas drilling on Ouray Refuge have been prepared. The public comment closed on April 22, 2014. Thurston Energy Operating Company is proposing to drill two oil and natural gas wells from two proposed well pad locations and Ultra Resources, Inc. (URI) is proposing to drill nine oil and gas wells from five proposed well pad locations. View the Thurston draft EA and news release, and the URI draft EA and news release at the "Learn more" link below.

    Learn more
  • Tree-climbing prairie dog

    Prairie dog climbing tree 150 x 118

    Did you know prairie dogs could climb? Neither did we! But this prairie dog pup was determined to get to the peanut butter on the tree.

Page Photo Credits — Canada geese: Copyright John Savage, Northern saw-whet owl: Dan Alonzo/USFWS, Green River: Copyright John Savage, Mule deer: Copyright John Savage, Porcupine in tree: USFWS photo, Black-necked stilt: Copyright John Savage, Prairie dog: Sonja Jahrsdoerfer/USFWS, Long-billed curlew chick: Copyright Jack Binch, Common loon: USFWS photo, Snowy plover: USFWS photo
Last Updated: Jul 03, 2014
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