• Canvasback pair

    Canvasback ducks

    Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge is a great oasis for breeding Canvasback ducks in the Great Basin.

    Learn more

  • Sandhill Crane pair

    Greater Sandhill Cranes

    Cranes arrive in March to stake out their territories and engage in mating dances.

    Learn more

  • Western Terrestrial Garter Snake


    Please drive slowly and watch for snakes migrating across the roads.

    Reptiles and Amphibians page

  • Killdeer and eggs

    Killdeer and Eggs

    Eggs laid in gravel blend well with their surroundings, but have little other cover to protect them from predation.

  • Sage Grouse Hen

    Sage Grouse

    Greater Sage Grouse hens convene at the local lek in the spring to watch males display and strut their stuff.

    Learn more

Refuge News

Long Dike Closure.....

Long Dike on the Auto Tour is scheduled to be closed starting Monday, June 11th in preparation of the Geese Round-up and will remain closed until the round-up is complete. The entry road to Brown Dike will be Closed the morning of the Geese Round-up, Saturday, June 23, 2018 and remain closed for the entire day. Please stop by the Visitors Center with any questions or concerns.



Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge is looking for Volunteer(s) for Waterfowl Banding and/or Light Maintenance. For a more detailed description on Volunteer Opportunites ...please click on "What we do," / "Get Involved." If you would like to volunteer, please send a letter of interest or inquires for further information to rubylake@fws.gov or call (775) 779-2237.

Our refuge bird population is expanding by leaps and bounds


Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge is soaring with feathered visitors arriving daily. With the mild temperatures occurring this time of year, our feathered friends flutter in from far and near. On a typical day you might encounter white-faced ibis, American avocets, eared grebes, great blue herons, pelicans, cormorants, Foster's and Caspian terns, yellow-headed blackbirds, marsh wrens, yellow warblers, yellow-rumped warblers and trumpeter swans. You might also see lots of ducks in beautiful breeding plumage including: canvasback, redhead, cinnamon teal, ruddy, mallard, pintail, northern shoveler, and lesser scaup. Little wings and little feet, Momma watching in the heat. Little eyes that shine so bright, Watch me grow and soar to new heights.


Fishing Line

Explore, Rest and Play, but please pick up after yourself. Fishing line and Trash left behind can be deadly to Wildlife, especially Waterfowl. If we work together, we can leave a heritage of plentiful and healthy wildlife for future generations of Americans to enjoy.

Upcoming Event

The Wild Goose Chase is "ON"

2018 Geese Round Up

8:00 AM (PST) Saturday, June, 23, 2018 at the Visitors Center...You must sign up to assist in the Geese Round-Up "For a memory you never will forget." We will meet at the Visitor Center/Headquarters Parking Lot for a short orientation and work assignments. If you would like to participate, please send your contact information or inquires for further information to rubylake@fws.gov or call (775)779-2237.


Why we are here

Refuge Purpose and Vision

Canvasback Drake

"...for use as ... a refuge and breeding ground for migratory birds and other wildlife." Executive Order 7923, July 2, 1938 "...for use as an inviolate sanctuary, or for any other management purpose, for migratory birds." 16 U.S.C. ยง 715d (Migratory Bird Conservation Act)

See the refuge Vision Statement

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