• Permits

    Special Use Permits

    Because of strict requirements concerning public uses, all commercial activities and certain other activities such as research require special permission and have permit fees associated with them. Some proposed activities requiring permits include: 

    -Filming/videotaping (any non-amateur work, including public television and other government entities) 

    -Wildlife or general photography (for publications or retail) 

    -Seining or any collection of plants, animals, soil, or water

    -Any after-hours use

    -Any activity in areas not open to the visiting public

    -All research

    -Guide Permits    

      When in doubt, it is best to apply for a special use permit.


      To Request a Special Use Permit:
      The permit must be requested at least two weeks in advance of planned activity.

      The request must be in writing, on letterhead if possible, and addressed to:

      Refuge Manager
      Santee National Wildlife Refuge
      2125 Fort Watson Road
      Summerton, SC 29148

      The request must include:

      Who is requesting the permit? Name and address of the permittee (if the permit is for more than one person, this person is responsible for the behavior and compliance of the entire group. Names for everyone in the group may be required.)
      What is the nature of the proposed activity?
      Why is it being conducted. (Purpose)
      Where the activity will take place (as specific as possible, boardwalk, Coffee Bay, etc.).
      When the activity will take place, including dates and time of the day.
      How the activity will be conducted. (methods and equipment)   

        The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issues permits under various wildlife law and treaties at a number of offices throughout the country.  Permits enable the public to engage in legitimate wildlife-related activities that would otherwise be prohibited by law.  Service permit programs ensure that such activities are carried out in a manner that safeguards wildlife.  Additionally, some permits promote conservation efforts by authorizing scientific research, generating data, or allowing wildlife management and rehabilitation activates to go forward.

        Permits are handled by permitting programs in International Affairs (Management Authority), Endangered SpeciesLaw Enforcement, and  Migratory Birds.

        Visit the National Wildlife Refuge System Web site for Special Use Permits.

        For more detailed information, go to How to Obtain a PermitFAQs/Facts or Application Forms.