Coronavirus (COVID-19) Notice
Although most refuge lands and outdoor spaces have remained open for the public to enjoy, we encourage you to:

  • Check local conditions on this website and call ahead for current information
  • Follow current CDC safe practices by maintaining a safe distance between yourself and other groups
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze
  • Most importantly, stay home if you feel sick


  • Grandparent and child hunting at sunset by USFWS

    Waterfowl Hunting at Emiquon

    UPDATE: Staging in parking lots will not be allowed this waterfowl season. Follow the link for more details.

    Learn more

  • Shovelor Rotator

    Sanctuary Period

    From Oct 15 - Feb 1, Chautauqua NWR levees, maintenance roads, and crossdike are closed for sanctuary. The nature trails remain open.

    Rules and Regulations

  • swan flying by Kara Heil/USFWS rotator

    Trumpeters at Emiquon

    Iconic bird enjoys rebound at Chautauqua-Emiquon Complex,

    Read Story...

  • ICF rotator

    In search of the Illinois Chorus Frog

    A wildlife conservation story by Carla Rich Montez. Photos courtesy of Jakob Cackowski

    Read the story

  • Mexico Monarchs AnnMarie Krmpotich/USFWS

    Monarchs On the Move

    Our monarchs are migrating to their wintering grounds in Mexico.

    Track their progress.

Get active on the refuge

Waterfowl Hunting on the Refuge

promo - sunset hunting

Update: staging on parking lots will not be allowed this season. Follow the link for an introduction to waterfowl hunting on Chautauqua and Emiquon National Wildlife Refuges, including regulations and water level information. Photo: Grandparent and child hunting at sunset by USFWS.

Waterfowl Hunting on the Refuges

Current Conditions

March 20, 2020

Our public restrooms are closed in response to guidance from state and local public health officials. All other public areas at Chautauqua, Emiquon, and Meredosia National Wildlife Refuges remain open. Rules and regulations still apply.

More information


olga routing 2

From making trails to woodworking, there are plenty of ways to volunteer at your local refuge. We would not be here without you.

Learn more
In the community

Environmental Education


We provide regionally specific environmental education programs for school classes, continuing learners, and groups of all ages and sizes. Email us to make a reservation for your next trip.

About the Complex

Illinois River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge Complex

Chautauqua National Wildlife Refuge is managed as part of the Illinois River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge Complex.

Read more about the complex
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