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  • Rattlesnake_218x116

    Native Reptiles

    At least 21 types of snakes call the refuge home, including 6 rattlesnake species. They are an important part of the desert community.

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    Exciting Night Life

    When the sun sets and the desert cools, a host of refuge animals stir, including ringtail cats, pocket mice and 11 species of bats.

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    Cryptic Critters

    Light-colored fur helps mammals reflect heat rather than soak it in. The scales of lizards serve the same purpose.

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    Going Underground

    Many desert animals burrow, including tortoise. They burrow down (sometimes up to many feet) to avoid the summer heat and winter cold.


Protecting Fawns


Due to the success of recovery efforts, pronghorn numbers have increased to historic average numbers.

During Fawning Season


Commercial Film Permit Compatibility Determination

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has received a request for a commercial filming permit to document Customs and Border Protection BORTAC operations on the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge. Please click the link below to review the Compatibility Determination for this action.

Commercial Filming Compatibility Determination

About the NWRS

National Wildlife Refuge System


The National Wildlife Refuge System, within the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, manages a national network of lands and waters set aside to conserve America’s fish, wildlife, and plants.

Learn more about the NWRS  

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  • Vehicle Barriers at Charlie Bell Well

    The Refuge proposes to construct vehicle barriers via the placement of small to moderate local boulders to exclude vehicle from accidently driving or parking on existing cultural resources at and near the Charlie Bell Well. The well is located in a highly traveled corridor used by cross border violators (CBV) - comprised mostly of narcotics smugglers. Consequently, the U.S. Border Patrol frequently patrols this area in search of CBVs and to perform search and rescue operations. Refuge staff also access the site. The barrier will be placed to maximize protection of cultural resources.

    Environmental Action Statement
  • Treating Sahara Mustard along the El Camino del Diablo

    Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge is proposing to using herbicides to treat Sahara Mustard in the non-wilderness corridor of the El Camino del Diablo. Please see the attached Environmental Action Statement for a description of the proposed action, treatment areas, and how to comment.

    EAS and NEPA Checklist for herbicide treatment
  • Mileage Sign Replacements Along the El Camino del Diablo

    The Service is proposing to replace existing outdated and unreadable mileage signs along the El Camino del Diablo with new metal signs which meet Service sign requirements. Please see the attached Environmental Action Statement and NEPA checklist for a full description of the proposed action.

    EAS mileage signs
Page Photo Credits — All photos courtesy of USFWS unless otherwise noted., Lesser long-nosed bats / USFWS, Horned Lizard / Johnida Dockens ©, Pronghorn / Steve Hillebrand ©, Black-tailed Rattlesnake / Gary M Stoltz ©
Last Updated: Feb 17, 2017
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