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Visitor Activities

Visitor Activities Page Photo
  • Hunting

    Hunting Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

    Sherburne provides hunting opportunities for small game, migratory birds and white-tailed deer in accordance with all applicable federal and Minnesota State laws and subject to special refuge regulations. The refuge is not open to the State special goose hunt, special deer muzzleloader, predator, bear, crow, raccoon or general turkey hunting. Only those species listed in the refuge hunting brochure may be taken. The refuge is divided into three hunting areas, each with its own regulations. There are also three small areas closed to all hunting. The refuge has a limited spring turkey hunt available for disabled and youth hunting, by special permit only. Please contact refuge headquarters for details.


    Refuge Hunting Regulations and Map (PDF)


  • Wildlife Viewing

    Wildlife Observation at Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

    The Prairie’s Edge Wildlife Drive, Blue Hill and Mahnomen Hiking Trails all offer spectacular views and great opportunities to see Sherburne’s myriad of wildlife species. Observation decks with spotting scopes give visitors the chance to scan for wildlife across the landscape. Songbirds, raptors and waterfowl abound and an early morning hike can provide the visitor with an enchanting symphony of sounds. Even a glimpse at red or grey fox, beaver or river otter are possible to the quiet observer. In October, thousands of sandhill cranes converge on refuge marshes and a visit at dawn or dusk will provide the rare treat of large flocks of birds flying in or out of the refuge.


    Sandhill Crane Viewing Map (PDF)

    Kids Butterfly Checklist (PDF) 


  • Interpretation

    Interpretation at Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

    Spring is always a great time to visit Sherburne, when returning songbirds fill the air with their symphony of song and nesting bald eagles can be viewed. Celebrate International Migratory Bird Day in mid May each year, when refuge tours, children’s activities, information booths and a perennial plant sale are held. An annual Wildlife Festival is held each fall, offering live bird programs, educational activities, information booths, a horse-drawn wagon ride across the oak savanna, and food.

    2016 Event Schedule 


  • Environmental Education

    Environmental Education at Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

    Student groups are invited to visit at any time of year. A trained corps of volunteers provide learning opportunities for teachers, Scout or 4-H leaders wishing to bring children on field trips. Their goal is to make learning in the outdoors easy and fun through continued workshop opportunities and working with adults to help them feel comfortable teaching in the outdoors. Tools for a successful trip can be provided, including trip planning, binoculars, hand lenses and snowshoes.

    Contact the visitor services manager at refuge headquarters for information and trip planning assistance.

  • Photography

    Wildlife Photography at Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

    There are many great photographic opportunities during a visit to Sherburne Refuge, especially along the Prairie’s Edge Wildlife Drive. Prairie wildflowers bloom from late spring through fall, waterfowl and other wetland birds are abundant, and bald eagles nest nearby. Even songbirds will often sit long enough for a quick shot when using your vehicle as a blind. With a stop at the beginning of the Drive, sighting notes left by Roving Interpreters or other visitors provide you with current information on species being seen and where to look.


  • Fishing

    Kid Fishing

    All fishing, including ice fishing, is available only on the St. Francis River at specified access points identified on our Public Use Regulations leaflet. Minnesota State regulations apply.

     Refuge Map and Regulations (PDF)

Page Photo Credits — Credit: USFWS
Last Updated: Nov 17, 2015
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