Permits

October Muzzleloader Hunt on DeSoto
  • Passes

    Migratory Bird Stamp 2017

    DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge is a federal fee area and a valid entry permit is required to enter the refuge or travel on roads in the refuge. Daily entrance fees are $3.00 per vehicle. Fees are collected at the visitor center or self-service fee stations at entrances. Other valid entrance permits include: The DeSoto Refuge annual pass ($15.00), Federal Duck Stamp, and the America the Beautiful Federal Recreational Lands Passes including the Annual, Senior, Access, Military or Volunteer. 

  • America the Beautiful Passes

    America the Beautiful Passes

    DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge honors the America the Beautiful Interagency Passes.  These passes are also available at the DeSoto Visitor Center.  The America the Beautiful Interagency Passes is a series of federal land passes that cover the entrance and standard amenity fees charged for using federal recreational lands.  These passes include Senior, Military, Annual, Access, and Every Kid in a Park Passes.  You can find out more at recreation.gov/pass.

    These passes are available at the DeSoto Visitor Center during business hours, Daily 8:30 am - 4:30 pm.  The Senior, Military, Access, and Every Kid in a Park passes require documentation and the applicant to be present at the visitor center when the pass is issued.  Cash or check is preferred form of payment

  • Your Fee Dollars at Work

    Blair/DeSoto Curriculum Guide

    Entrance fees are used for projects to enhance the visitor experience on the refuge. Fee money has funded a variety of projects including signs, brochure and educational materials. The recently completed Junior Refuge Manager Activity booklet is a great example of your fee dollars at work. Other recently completed or in progress projects include the Blair Community Schools/DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge Environmental Education Curriculum Guide, new kiosk signs for DeSoto and Boyer Chute, printing for the refuge regulations brochure, emergency supplies needed for Bertrand Museum evacuation, new tracking spreadsheets for visitation statistics and an updated bird brochure.



  • Permits

    Tree Stand

    Permits are required for certain activities on the refuge. These include hunting and woodcutting. Contact refuge office for more information.

  • Commercial Filming & Still Photography

    Waterfowl on DeSoto Lake

    A permit is required for all commercial filming at a refuge. 

    You do not need a permit for commercial still photography in areas or during times that are already open to the public, unless you are using a model, set, or prop. Photographers cannot use portraits taken on the refuge to promote or sell their services.

    We require a permit for still photography if it:

    • takes places in areas closed to the public or when the refuge is normally closed.
    • we would incur costs for providing on-site management and oversight to protect agency resources or minimize visitor conflicts.

  • Hunting

    Youth Turkey Hunting

    Hunting opportunities at DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge are available on a regulated basis. Deer and wild turkey hunts are available yearly. All hunting occurs at DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge within the state seasons, follows the regulations of the state and special DeSoto NWR regulations.

    In addition to state and refuge hunting permits, all hunters are required to possess a valid entrance pass and a DeSoto Hunting Regulations Permit (listed below).

    2020-2021 Hunting Regulations and Permit

    2020-2021 Fall/Winter Deer Hunts

    Deer (Muzzleloader - Antlerless Only)- December 5-6, 2020

    Deer (Muzzleloader - Antlerless Only)- January 2-3, 2021

    Deer (Archery - Either Sex) - October 1, 2020 - January 10, 2021

    For Muzzleloader hunts, Nebraska Hunters need a statewide muzzleloader (Dec. hunt only) or Wahoo AOSC (Dec. or Jan. Hunt) permit and may only harvest antlerless deer. Hunters also need to print and sign the 2020-2021 DeSoto Hunting Regulations and Permit brochure found above. Have these permits printed and signed to participate in the weekend hunts. Contact refuge for more information: 712-388-4803

    For Muzzleloader hunts, Iowa Hunters must apply via mail (DeSoto NWR, Attn: Antlerless Hunts, 1434 316th Lane, Missouri Valley, IA 51555) or email (peter_rea@fws.gov) directly to the refuge. When applying through mail or email, include muzzleloader hunt weekend you wish to participate in along with name, address and phone number. A letter will then be sent out with instructions on how to obtain the special antlerless deer permit.