Motor Restrictions at Delta National Wildlife Refuge

Delta National Wildlife Refuge does not permit the use of surface drive motors while on the refuge. Surface drive motors can cause prop scarring and destroy aquatic vegetation that waterfowl feed upon and endanger wildlife — and are not permitted for use on the refuge. Because surface drive motor powered vehicles can access areas that have little to no water  – their use increases disturbance to resting waterfowl and decreases the already limited locations for sanctuary and resting locations for other wildlife. The use of surface-drive outboard motors, such as a “go-devil” or “mud buddy,” is strictly prohibited on the refuge.

For more information download a copy of the Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges Complex’s public use regulations booklet or call us at 982/882-2000.

Visit Us

Delta National Wildlife Refuge offers a unique experience for travelers who venture beyond the road’s end to travel by boat across the Mississippi River and into the marshes bordering the Gulf of Mexico. If you are not able to visit in person, hop aboard our boat for a virtual visit!

How to Get There

Delta National Wildlife Refuge is located near the mouth of the Mississippi River in Plaquemines Parish, seven miles south and east of the town of Venice, Louisiana. The refuge is accessible only by boat. To reach the refuge travel 75 miles south from New Orleans to Venice on Highway 23. Boat launches are available at private marinas in Venice. From Venice, travel seven miles south along the Mississippi River to the refuge’s marshes which splay like a webbed bird's foot along the east side of the river.

Know Before You Go
  • The Mississippi River has heavy currents and is heavily traveled by crew boats and cargo ships producing large wakes. At the refuge, many channels and ponds are shallow. Be aware and boat with care
  • The refuge’s wetlands are a labyrinth of channels and marshes which change from year to year due to the dynamic nature of the river system. During the winter, fog comes in quickly along the river. A GPS is recommended for safe navigation
  • Cell phone coverage in the refuge is spotty; a VHF radio is best for communication
  • May through September can be hot and buggy. Warm weather throughout the year brings mosquitos. Refuge visitors should carry sunscreen, plenty of water, and insect repellent

 

Activities

Enjoy exploration and recreation on your national wildlife refuge national wildlife refuge
A national wildlife refuge is typically a contiguous area of land and water managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service  for the conservation and, where appropriate, restoration of fish, wildlife and plant resources and their habitats for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans.

Learn more about national wildlife refuge
. Because the refuge is accessible only by boat, visitors mostly sport fish and hunt. Other public uses include wildlife viewing, photography, and exploration by watercraft.  

The refuge is open from sunrise to sunset. The refuge is closed at night, except during season when hunters may enter the refuge at 4 a.m. Special closures are in effect during waterfowl season. Consult the Southeast Louisiana Refuges Complex Annual User Brochure and Regulations for specific information and maps.

Related Documents

Southeast Louisiana Refuges Complex Annual User Brochure and Regulations. The Complex provides a wide variety of wildlife dependent public uses such as hunting, fishing, wildlife photography, environmental education, wildlife interpretation and observation. See the user brochure for more...

Other Facilities in the Complex

Delta National Wildlife Refuge is managed as part of the Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges Complex. Nine Southeast Louisiana Refuges are part of a rich ecological system which includes marshes, pine and bottomland hardwood forests, lakes, barrier islands, swamps and bayous. Ranging from the marshy delta at the mouth of the Mississippi, to the wetlands that help protect New Orleans from hurricanes and provide a nursery to the fisheries that support the region’s food economy, to the wild bayous of the Atchafalaya Basin; the Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges preserve wildlife, habitat, and recreation opportunities representative of this unique part of the country.

All of the Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges are open to public visits for nature-based recreational enjoyment. Priority public uses are hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, wildlife photography, environmental education, and interpretation.

The refuge complex headquarters is located at 61389 Hwy 434, Lacombe, Louisiana 70445. This site also hosts the Bayou Lacombe Visitor Center and has walking trails that wind through an historic garden site and along Bayou Lacombe.

Rules and Policies

Enjoy exploration and recreation on your national wildlife refuge national wildlife refuge
A national wildlife refuge is typically a contiguous area of land and water managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service  for the conservation and, where appropriate, restoration of fish, wildlife and plant resources and their habitats for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans.

Learn more about national wildlife refuge
. The refuge is open from sunrise to sunset. The refuge is closed at night, except during season, hunters may enter the refuge at 4 a.m.  Special closures are in effect during waterfowl season. Migratory game bird, big game, and upland game hunting, as well as sport fishing are allowed on the refuge subject to Louisiana state regulations.  Consult the Southeast Louisiana Refuges Complex Annual User Brochure and Regulations for specific information and map. Hunters must carry a signed copy of this brochure which serves as a refuge hunting permit.

To ensure healthy habitat and sustainable natural resources for your continued enjoyment and safety, the following activities are prohibited on the refuge: 

• Feeding wildlife
• Air-thrust boats, aircraft, mud boats, and air-cooled propulsion engines
• Acting as a hunting or fishing guide or outfitter on the refuge and receiving any form of compensation for a guiding activity - including guiding, outfitting, lodging fees, or club membership
• Discharge of firearms within 250 yards of buildings or work sites, such as oil or gas production facilities
• Possession of buckshot, lead shot, slugs, rifles, or rifle ammunition while hunting
• Dogs and driving of deer during archery hunts
• Possession or distribution of bait or hunting with the aid of bait, including any grain, salt, minerals, other feed, or any non-naturally occurring attractant
• Use or possession of alcohol while hunting
• Trail cameras or deer decoys
• Open fires
• Cutting, removing, or damaging trees and other plants
• Target shooting
• Camping
• Using flagging or trail markers, except reflective tacks
• All commercial fin fishing and shell fishing
• Trotlines, limb lines, slat traps, jug lines, nets, or alligator lines
• It is illegal to operate unmanned aircraft on Refuge property without a special permit. (*A drone flight may be permitted occasionally for research or resource management purposes). If a drone operator stands beyond Refuge boundaries and flies the vehicle over the Refuge, fines can be levied if the drone is observed disturbing wildlife
• Taking of turtles.

Non-emergency complaints of violations on refuge lands should be reported to refuge law enforcement, (985) 882-2041.

To report general wildlife violations in the State of Louisiana: Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Operation Game Thief Hotline: (800) 442-2511
 

 

Locations

Delta National Wildlife Refuge
61389 Hwy 434 Lacombe, LA 70445