person wearing yellow shirt and red hard hat carrying a drip torch and fire in the background
Prescribed Burn Plans on Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge

Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) announces plans to conduct up to six (6) prescribed burns on the Refuge during the 2024 season. The goal this year is to burn up to 130 acres of grasslands and 30 acres of cattail marsh. The result will be enhanced grassland nesting cover and improved marsh habitat for a variety of migratory birds and other wildlife. For additional information, please refer to our news release here.

Located between Rochester and Buffalo, Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) has been described as one of the best kept secrets of Western New York.
Letter to Genesee County

To view the September 29, 2023 letter to Genesee County Economic Development Center, visit https://www.fws.gov/media/service-letter-genesee-county

Visit Us

Teeming with wildlife and wild lands, Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge offers opportunities for visitors to experience nature in all seasons.

The refuge offers opportunities for wildlife observation, wildlife photography, environmental education and interpretation, hunting, and fishing. Other recreational activities on the refuge include hiking, biking, paddling, and cross country skiing or snow shoeing. Whether you are a hunter, birder, trapper, educator, recreational enthusiast, or just hoping to learn more about the natural world, the refuge has something for you.

Refuge trails, overlooks, fishing, hunting and trapping areas are open sunrise to sunset unless by Special Use Permit for special events. 

Location and Contact Information

      About Us

      Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1958 primarily as a nesting, resting, feeding, and staging area for migratory waterfowl. Our goals are to provide high quality freshwater wetland migration stopover and breeding habitat; maintain the health and integrity of Oak Orchard Creek as well as its associated floodplain and wetlands; provide a diverse mix of grassland, shrubland and forested upland habitats; provide high quality recreation, education, interpretive, hunting, and fishing programs; and to enhance partnerships with local communities and organizations.

      What We Do

      Wildlife conservation is at the heart of the National Wildlife Refuge System. It drives everything on U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service lands and waters managed within the Refuge System, from the purposes for which a 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
      is established to the recreational activities offered to the resource management tools used. Using conservation best practices, the Refuge System manages Service lands and waters to help ensure the survival of native wildlife species.

      Iroquois NWR is actively managed to provide the best possible habitat for the widest variety of wildlife. More than half of the refuge consists of wetlands, including marshes, shrub-scrub wetlands and forested wetlands. The remaining habitats are upland and include grasslands, shrublands and forests. Some of the habitat management tools we use include prescribed fire, water level manipulation, invasive species invasive species
      An invasive species is any plant or animal that has spread or been introduced into a new area where they are, or could, cause harm to the environment, economy, or human, animal, or plant health. Their unwelcome presence can destroy ecosystems and cost millions of dollars.

      Learn more about invasive species
      removal, and inventory and monitoring. 

      Kayakers navigating a swamp full of trees and lily pads.

      Some 30 national wildlife refuges  charge visitors a nominal entrance fee (generally $3-$5 daily)  to cover road and facility maintenance.  If you are a regular visitor or would like to visit other public lands, you could save by buying an America the Beautiful Federal...

      Our Organization

      Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge is a part of the North Atlantic-Appalachian region and shares office space with the Lower Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office as well as the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. 

      A bright blue sky obstructed by fluffy white clouds reflected off of a stream shot from inside a kayak
      The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages an unparalleled network of public lands and waters called the National Wildlife Refuge System. With more than 570 refuges spanning the country, this system protects iconic species and provides some of the best wildlife viewing opportunities on Earth.
      Juvenile Northern Pike in aquarium at Gavins Point National Fish Hatchery, South Dakota
      The Fish and Aquatic Conservation program leads aquatic conservation efforts for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. We are committed to tackling the nation’s highest priority aquatic conservation and recreational challenges to conserve, restore, and enhance fisheries for future generations.

      Our Species

      The unique array of habitats throughout the refuge host a diversity of wildlife. Over 266 different species of birds, an estimated 29 species of reptiles and amphibians, 18 species of fish, 42 species of mammals mammals, and an abundance of invertebrates have been documented on the refuge. Many visitors come for a chance to see migratory neo-tropical birds, large flocks of waterfowl, or to catch a glimpse at the resident eagle nests and heron rookeries.

      Our Library

      Here is a comprehensive list of documents and links that pertain to the refuge if you cannot find what you're looking for on our other pages.


      General information about Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge  including its history, purpose,  trails, overlooks, activities, etc.


      Refuge bird brochure. List birds found on the refuge and during which seasons they may be found.


      Refuge mammals brochure. Lists most common mammals found on the refuge.


      Refuge wildlife observation general information and rules. Lists the names and locations of nature trails and overlooks.


      This is a general map of the refuge. For information specific to activities please refer to fact sheets above.

      Get Involved

      There are many ways to get involved at Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge. There are opportunities for youth employment through our Youth Conservation Corps Program, occasional internships, volunteering, and becoming involved with our Friends partner program.