Permits & Passes

Boardwalk through the marsh - Matt Poole/USFWS.

Special Use Permits are required for a variety of refuge uses including group visits (e.g., birding tours, school field trips), research, and commercial filming. All permit requests must be made in writing (via email) at least two weeks ahead of the date of the proposed activity. A full description of the permit application process (pdf).

The refuge also issues a variety of very specific permits for such things as berry picking, shell fishing, and nighttime surf fishing. Contact the refuge directly for additional information about these different uses.

Passes:  America the Beautiful - The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands series of passes may be obtained at the refuge.  The refuge also sells Federal Duck Stamps and an annual pass that can only be used at Parker River NWR ($20).  Before traveling to the refuge to obtain one of these passes, it is advisable to call the refuge to make sure that someone is on duty who can sell and/or issue passes.  That is not always the case.  The Federal passes can also be ordered online here: