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Visitor Activities

  • Hunting

    Man and boy in hunters orange - USFWS.

    The refuge is open for spring turkey, white-tailed deer (archery, shotgun, muzzleloader), American woodcock, ruffed grouse, eastern cottontail rabbit, and gray squirrels. Hunting is allowed subject to refuge regulations, State and federal laws and permit restrictions. The most intense hunt period is during the shotgun deer season which is typically early December. Other than the deer season, hunt pressure is generally light. Starting on July 1st people interested in hunting on the refuge will be able to go online to apply for the upcoming seasons. The website is currently being developed; when we have the new URL we will post it here.  The application season is open for one month for lottery hunts and during each hunt season for non-lottery hunts. All youth (12 - 17 yrs old) are exempt from the lottery process and all fees. All active military, seniors (62 yrs plus) and anyone who is permanently disabled receive a 50% discount on permit fees. Full details are found on the application link above. 

    We are open for the annual MA Youth Hunt.

    Download the hunt regulations brochure (pdf)

      Hunt Notice 2016-17 (pdf)

    For more information from MassWildlife, visit the following:

     2016-17 MassWildlife Hunting, Fishing, and Trapping Seasons

     2016-17 MassWildlife Migratory Bird Regulations

    Learn More
  • Fishing

    Refuge employee and child fishing - USFWS.

    Fishing is allowed on the Nashua River and along its banks within the refuge. Fishing is not permitted within wetland pools, ponds or streams within the refuge. State fishing regulations and license requirements are in force on the refuge. A canoe launch is provided at the lower parking area at the Still River entrance to the refuge. Fishing on the Nashua River can range from fair to good for largemouth bass, yellow perch, brown bullheads, and a variety of sunfish.

  • Wildlife Viewing

    Visitors looking through binoculars.

    Dawn and dusk are the best times to see wildlife. Observe from the sidelines. Leave “abandoned” young animals alone. Its parent is probably close and waiting for you to leave. Try sitting in one good location. Let wildlife get used to your presence. Animals that have hidden will reappear once they think you are gone. Walk quietly. Remain in designated areas, being aware of sounds and smells. You will hear more than you will see. Teach children the value of quiet observation. Other wildlife watchers will appreciate your consideration. Look for animal signs (tracks, scat, feathers and nests left behind).

    Refuge bird brochure (pdf)

  • Interpretation

    School group on the refuge - USFWS.

    A self-guided interpretative trail has been established with the assistance of the Friends of the Oxbow NWR. Pamphlets for the trail and the refuge brochure are available at the information kiosk at the Still River entrance. A number of interpretive panels are located along refuge trails. Both refuge staff and members of the Friends of the Refuge provide interpretive programs from time to time. If you are interested in these programs, please call the Friends President, Rona Balco at 978-779-2259 or Ada at

    Interpretive trail brochure (pdf)

  • Environmental Education

    Environmental Education

    Structured educational programs are available for schools and other groups. Programs are presented by both refuge staff and members of the Friends of the Oxbow NWR. If you are interested in these programs, please call the Friends President, Rona Balco at 978-779-2259 or Ada at

  • Photography


    During the spring and summer months, visitors are likely to see amphibians and/or reptiles. The trails south of Route 2 follow the Nashua River and create a small pond along Turnpike trail where you are likely to see frogs and/or snakes, like the American Toad or the Common Garter Snake. In the winter months, signs of mammals become more present such as those of the Eastern Coyote or White-tailed Deer. If you snap a great photo of wildlife at the refuge, please email it to us. We will give you credit if we decide to use it.

Last Updated: Apr 13, 2017
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