Great River National Wildlife Refuge aims to restore and mimic the mosaic of habitats that were historically found along the Mississippi River. Slow moving backwaters, floodplain forests, wetlands, sedge meadows and grasslands combine to provide food, shelter and resting areas for a variety of birds. The refuge includes a complex of river island and land divisions in Illinois and Missouri along the Mississippi River.

Visit Us

National wildlife refuges offer us all a chance to unplug from the stresses of daily life and reconnect with our natural surroundings. Great River National Wildlife Refuge is made up of three remote units along the Mississippi River. Fox Island and Long Island Divisions provide primitive opportunities to explore river habitats and wildlife by foot or boat. Directions to these divisions are available by viewing the maps. The Delair Division is closed to the public as a condition of the purchase.

Location and Contact Information

      Our Species

      The Mississippi River valley serves as one of the most important bird migration corridors in North America. Riverine wetland habitats offers migrating birds essential food and cover along their journey. Nearly 300 bird species, including waterfowl, hawks, eagles and herons, visit the refuge during migration.