Bison in foreground of Rio Mora's  Entrance Sign / R. Larranaga, USFWS

A Special Use Permit is required for most activities on the refuge, other than for environmental education and interpretation participants accompanied by Service staff and/or one of our on-site partners.

Special Use Permits
Permits enable the public to engage in legitimate wildlife-related activities and ensures that such activities are carried out in a manner that safeguards wildlife.  Access to the refuge is limited; as the purpose of the refuge is to protect, preserve, restore and maintain natural ecological processes.  All non-public access requires a Special Use Permit.

At the Rio Mora National Wildlife Refuge, Special Use Permits are required in order to conduct the following types of activities:

  • Research
  • General

Research SUP
Scientific research that is compatible with refuge goals and the refuge, may be permitted.

To apply for a Research SUP, complete and submit the attached research permit application (located in the link at the bottom of this page).  New applicants are required to discuss proposed research projects with the refuge before submitting an application.  Applications are reviewed by a committee to determine if the research project is compatible with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service regulations and goals; compatible with Rio Mora National Wildlife Refuge regulations, goals, and management directives; and not a duplication of past or current research on the refuge.  The deadlines for research permit applications are the 15th of January, April, July and October.

Contact Project Leader:  Mr. Chris Lohrengel, Refuge Manager
Northern New Mexico Refuges Complex
Phone:  (575) 375-2331, Ext. 200
Fax:      (575) 375-2332

General SUP
For all other access, please contact the refuge.  No commercial use is allowed on the refuge.

Visit the National Wildlife Refuge System web site for more information on Special Use Permits.  Additional information can be found at How to Obtain a Permit, FAQs/Facts or Application Forms.