Rules and Regulations

Wood Ducks swimming

At Refuges, Wildlife Rules
National Wildlife Refuges are places where wildlife comes first. Although people are welcome, activities are regulated and monitored to ensure that impacts are minimal to the plants and animals that call the refuge “home”. Below is a partial list of rules and regulations for Cat Island National Wildlife Refuge. Click here to read all refuge regulations.

Trapping Occurs at this Refuge:
Trapping is a wildlife management tool used on some national wildlife refuges. Trapping may be used to protect endangered and threatened species or migratory birds or to control certain wildlife populations. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service also views trapping as a legitimate recreational and economic activity when there are harvestable surpluses of fur-bearing mammals. On this refuge trapping occurs only as a wildlife management tool and is prohibited by the public. Outside of Alaska, refuges that permit trapping as a recreational use may require trappers to obtain a refuge special use permit. Signs are posted on refuges where trapping occurs. Contact the refuge manager for specific regulations. More information here.

Refuge Hours
The refuge is open during daylight hours, except during hunting season. See refuge regulations for specific information. There are no facilities available on Cat Island National Wildlife Refuge.

It is illegal to operate unmanned aircraft on Refuge property without a special permit. (*A drone flight may be permitted occasionally for research or resource management purposes). If a drone operator stands beyond Refuge boundaries and flies the vehicle over the Refuge, fines can be levied if the drone is observed disturbing wildlife. 

Refuge roads may be closed to public entry due to flooding. Be aware of signs indicating closed areas. There are two designated hiking trails that are closed to all hunting. Please see the refuge regulations for details.

Daily Use Cards
All visitors must obtain and complete a Daily Visitor Use Reporting Card upon entering the refuge and display it on the dash so that name and address are visible from the outside. Before leaving the refuge, users must complete the reverse side of the card and deposit it in a drop box at the visitor kiosk station located at the entrance to the refuge.

Searching for or removing any object of archeological or historical significance, including arrowheads, pottery, etc., as well as any natural materials such as plants, mushrooms, berries, and antler sheds is prohibited.