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St. Catherine Creek
National Wildlife Refuge


21 Pintail Lane
Sibley, MS   39165
E-mail: saintcatherinecreek@fws.gov
Phone Number: 601-442-6696
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
http://www.fws.gov/saintcatherinecreek/
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  Overview
St. Catherine Creek National Wildlife Refuge
St. Catherine Creek National Wildlife Refuge was established in January 1990 to preserve, improve and create habitat for waterfowl. Intensive management programs on the refuge provide excellent winter habitat and resting areas for waterfowl in the Lower Mississippi River Valley.

Encompassing nearly 26,000 acres, with a potential size of 34,256 acres, the refuge is located in Adams County in southwest Mississippi. The headquarters lies 13 miles south of Natchez, Mississippi. Natchez is the oldest settlement on the Mississippi River and is world renowned for its beautiful antebellum homes. The western refuge boundary is formed by the Mississippi River. The eastern boundary meanders along the loessal bluffs and the southern boundary borders the Homochitto River.


Getting There . . .
St. Catherine Creek National Wildlife Refuge headquarters is located 13 miles south of Natchez, Mississippi. From Natchez, follow U.S. Highway 61 South approximately 10 miles to Sibley. Turn right and follow York Road 2 miles to the refuge entrance. Turn left on Pintail Lane. The headquarters is located approximately .1 mile down Pintail Lane on the left. Refuge directional signs are located at each turn.


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These driving directions are provided as a general guide only. No representation is made or warranty given as to their content, road conditions or route usability or expeditiousness. User assumes all risk of use.

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Wildlife and Habitat

Habitat on the refuge offers a myriad of ecological niches for wildlife. Cypress swamps and hardwood forests vegetated with oak, gum, elm, ash, cottonwood and pine comprise 30 percent of the refuge. Ten percent of the acreage is open water, while the remaining property consists of cleared land and batture land created by the meanderings of the Mississippi River.

Over 11,000 acres of the land previously cleared for agriculture has been reforested with native hardwood trees.

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History
The refuge was established in 1990 with an ongoing land acquisition program with the most recent significant acquisition of Sibley Farms in 1995. The refuge now encompasses close to 26,000 acres. Nearly two-thirds of the refuge was cleared for row crop agriculture in the 1960's prior to Service ownership. The service has reforested over 11,000 acres of that agricultural land with native tree species.

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    Recreation and Education Opportunities
Fishing
Hunting
Photography
Wildlife Observation
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Management Activities
A primary objective of the refuge is to enhance aquatic habitat to provide support for migrating and wintering waterfowl. Waterfowl management also benefits shorebirds, wading birds and other aquatic species.

Management strategies include the construction of dikes and levees in conjunction with installation of water control structures to impound water for waterfowl and other aquatic species.

Hunt management entails the gathering of deer harvest data to be used in analysis of population dynamics and herd health. This data is used to formulate each years harvest strategy.

Refuge endangered species include the least tern and the fat pocketbook mussel. At least two active bald eagle nests are located on the refuge. Endangered species management consists primarily of population monitoring and protection of critical habitat.

The refuge provides assistance and serves as an outdoor laboratory for university research projects. Recent research activities have included studies of the black bear, fat pocketbook mussel, Rafinesque big-eared bat, wood stork and invertebrates in shorebird feeding areas.