National Wildlife Refuge System
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National Wildlife Refuge Week

young visitor
Volunteer researchers and a biotech kick up their heels at Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska. National Wildlife Refuge Week events in October offer more reasons to jump for joy.
Credit: USFWS

October 13-19
Many refuges will host public celebrations this month of National Wildlife Refuge Week, which falls on the second full week in October. The nation’s 561 national wildlife refuges protect wildlife habitat while cleaning our air, filtering our water and pollinating our crops. They also provide world-class hunting and fishing and hiking. Check the special events calendar for Refuge Week events. Among events planned:

 

Saturday, October 12:

  • Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge, IN

    11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    Log Cabin Day Festival, sponsored by the Muscatatuck Wildlife Society, at Myers Cabin. The festival features a free ham and bean dinner, old-time crafts, music, wildlife exhibits and children’s activities. On Sunday, the refuge will be hosting the annual Big Sit!

  • Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge, TX

    9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    14th annual Trinity River Butterfly count in northern Liberty County. Areas to be counted include the refuge, Tarkington Prairie and the Gaylor Lake area.

  • Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, MO

    10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    The refuge will partner with Friends of Arrow Rock to demonstrate the unique mitigation project on the Jameson Island Unit adjacent to the town of Arrow Rock.

  • Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge, IA

    9 a.m. to noon
    In honor of pioneer Iowa conservationist J.N. “Ding” Darling, the refuge will host volunteer opportunities from collecting seeds to removing invasive plants and restoring prairie habitat. All ages are welcome. Volunteers will receive a free lunch.  Pre-registration is encouraged: 515-994-3400.

  • Audubon National Wildlife Refuge, ND

    5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
    Halloween Adventure. Enjoy supper and a Halloween craft, followed by a hayride alongside the scenic shoreline of Lake Audubon. Pre-register by October 9: 701-442-5754 ext. 117.

  • Necedah National Wildlife Refuge, WI

    9 a.m. to 11 a.m.
    Learn to identify and sketch waterfowl on the “Jr. Duck Waterfowl Hike.” Youth K-12 can also enter the Federal Jr. Duck Stamp Contest.

  • Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge, IL

    10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    Open House. Meet refuge staff. Learn about the National Wildlife Refuge System and local conservation partners. Take an auto tour of the refuge. See a program with live birds.

  • Mingo National Wildlife Refuge, MO

    8 a.m.
    Enjoy a guided paddle ride down the Mingo River. Some canoes and kayaks will be available for use. Participants are welcome to bring their own canoe, kayak or life jacket to open room up for more participants. Pre-register; 573-222-3589 or peter_rea@fws.gov.

Sunday, October 13:

  • Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge, VA

    1 to 5 p.m.
    Enjoy “Go Wild,” a free public event, featuring activities for all ages including bluebird house building, a guided kayak tour, nature walks, arts and crafts activities, storytelling and interactive exhibits. Lunch is provided to all attendees.

  • Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, MO

    10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    The refuge will partner with Friends of Arrow Rock to demonstrate the unique mitigation project on the Jameson Island Unit adjacent to the town of Arrow Rock.

  • Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge, IN

    All day
    Log Cabin Day Festival, sponsored by the Muscatatuck Wildlife Society, at Myers Cabin. The festival features a free ham and bean dinner, old-time crafts, music, wildlife exhibits and children’s activities. On Sunday, the refuge will be hosting the annual Big Sit!

  • Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge, TX

    7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    14th annual Trinity River Butterfly count in northern Liberty County. Areas to be counted include the refuge, Tarkington Prairie and the Gaylor Lake area.

Monday, October 14:

  • Swan Lake National Wildlife Refuge, MO

    Daytime
    Join local school classmates in learning about nocturnal creatures and exploring your night senses in a fun, interactive creative house.

Saturday, October 19:

  • Patuxent Research Refuge, MD

    10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    Wildlife Festival. Enjoy live animals, children’s crafts, tram tours, scientific demonstrations and behind-the-scenes research tours of the USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center located on the refuge. See where endangered whooping cranes and sea ducks are raised and studied. National Wildlife Visitor Center 

The Big Sit!
On October 12 and 13, scores of refuges will once again host The Big Sit!, an annual event in which teams count and report bird species seen or heard from a 17-foot-diameter circle. Participating refuges include:  

 


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Last updated: July 24, 2013