Rules and Regulations

Refuge entry sign

In order to protect National Wildlife Refuge resources, reduce competing uses, and safeguard visitors, it is necessary to establish regulations on the use of the Refuge. Your cooperation is necessary to help us properly manage the Refuge and its wildlife.


Recreational Opportunities and Visitor Information  

Many wildlife-oriented recreational opportunities are offered at Fish Springs NWR, including wildlife observation, wildlife photography, waterfowl hunting, and a self-guided auto tour with wildlife interpretive signs.  The visitor information that follows will help insure that your Refuge visit will be safe and enjoyable.  Please observe all the following regulations to protect yourself and Refuge resources. When in doubt, contact Refuge staff or visit the Refuge office to inquire about regulations or Refuge operations.

General Rules and Regulations

  • Public access is allowed year round from dawn to dusk within designated areas of the Refuge, including an 11-mile Auto Tour Route.
  • All plants, animals, rocks, and cultural artifacts are protected.  Molesting, disturbing, injuring, destroying, or removing any plant, animal, rock, or cultural artifact is prohibited, except legally taken waterfowl.
  • Wildlife observation, photography, and hiking are permitted in designated areas.
  • Only vehicles registered for highway use are allowed on the Refuge's public use roads. Unlicensed off-highway vehicles (OHVs) such as motorcycles or all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are prohibited on the Refuge.
  • The Refuge speed limit is 25 mph unless posted otherwise.
  • Please observe all posted speed limits.
  • Parking is allowed in designated areas and on the road shoulder as long as the vehicle does not obstruct the passing of other vehicles on roads or dikes.
  • Off road vehicle use and overnight parking are both prohibited.
  • Fires and camping are prohibited on the Refuge.
  • Swimming is prohibited.
  • Pet must be leashed, except for hunting dogs when used during a legal hunt.
  • Non-motorized boats of 15 feet or less are allowed in designated areas of the Refuge.
  • Please pack out ALL trash you bring in. Littering is prohibited and against the law.
  • Persons possessing, transporting, or carrying firearms on National Wildlife Refuge System lands must comply with all provisions of State and local law. Persons may only use (discharge) firearms within designated areas of Fish Springs NWR during the legal waterfowl hunting season in accordance with refuge regulations (50 CFR 27.42 and specific regulations in 50 CFR Part 32).
  • All uses not expressly permitted are prohibited.