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National Wildlife Refuge

In the San Luis Valley, the rugged Sangre de Cristo Range shadows the wetlands of Alamosa National Wildlife Refuge.
9383 El Rancho Lane
Alamosa, CO   81101
E-mail: alamosa@fws.gov
Phone Number: 719-589-4021
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Even when winter "icebox" conditions set in, eagles, hawks, owls, and some waterfowl are found in the San Luis Valley.
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Alamosa National Wildlife Refuge

Alamosa and Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuges (NWR) are found in the heart of the Colorado's San Luis Valley. Alamosa NWR includes 11,169 acres of wetlands of various depths and sizes located primarily within the Rio Grande River flood plain. The natural wet meadows, river oxbows, and riparian corridors support high wildlife diversity including songbirds, water birds, raptors, deer, beaver, and coyotes.

Getting There . . .
The headquarters for both Refuges is located at Alamosa NWR, 4 miles east of the town of Alamosa, Colorado, on Highway 160 and 2 miles south on El Rancho Lane. Monte Vista NWR is located 6 miles south of the town of Monte Vista on Highway 15.

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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

As seasons change in the San Luis valley, so does the wildlife found on the land and in the waters. Spring brings ducks, geese, sandhill cranes, avocets, ibis, and herons to the valley.

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Sitting at an elevation of approximately 7,600 feet and at the western edge of the Central Flyway, the San Luis Valley has always provided crucial migratory bird habitat.

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Management Activities
Because of the importance of water to this region, water management on Alamosa NWR is particularly important. Many irrigation canals built during the 1880s provide water to Alamosa NWR and other valley water users. Water levels can be manipulated to provide birds with adequate aquatic vegetation for food and escape cover. To provide much of the wetland habitat on both Refuges, water is distributed and manipulated by Refuge staff through an extensive system of ditches, water control structures, dikes, and levees.