Facility Activities

The refuge offers a variety of recreational opportunities from hunting and fishing to wildlife observation and photography. There truly is something for everyone! 

Featured Stops on the Wild Goose Auto Tour

As a Globally Important Bird Area, a designated site along the Great Missouri Birding Trail, and one of Missouri’s Watchable Wildlife Areas, Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge provides an excellent opportunity to enjoy wildlife in its natural setting...

Biking is a good way to see wildlife, learn about habitats and photograph nature. Yield to pedestrians; many refuge routes are multi-use trails. Biking may be permitted at sites where it is consistent with a refuge’s statutory purpose. E-bikes are permitted on any refuge roads and trails where traditional bicycle use is allowed, if it is consistent with a refuge’s statutory purpose and the refuge manager determines it to be a compatible use.

From bald eagles to spoonbills, from condors to puffins, birds abound on national wildlife refuges. Refuges provide places for birds to nest, rest, feed and breed making them world-renown for their birding opportunities.

Waterfowl Bird Survey Results

Many sites do not allow dogs because they can disturb wildlife. Refuges that do allow dogs generally require that they be leashed. Some sites allow hunters and sledders to bring dogs.
Seasonal firewood gathering is available at a few sites, by permit. Tree cutting is generally limited to dead and downed trees or non-native trees. Some refuges have stopped allowing firewood cutting to stem the spread of the emerald ash borer, an invasive pest. Check individual sites for more information.

Major species include carp and bullhead. Fishing is allowed only from the banks.

Take your pick of 2,100 miles of refreshing trails and boardwalks. Whether you want a short, easy walk or a challenging hike, you’re likely to find what you want. Some trails are paved and universally accessible. Some trails include displays on visual arts, local history and culture or environmental education.

The mix of wetlands, grasslands and forests on Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge creates perfect cover for the deer population. The refuge holds a managed white-tailed deer hunt in November for people confined to a wheelchair and people with amputations. While there are a limited number of...

8th Annual Photo Contest

**Next Entry Deadline**Entries must arrive at the office by 4:00 pmFriday, September 22, 2023

CategoriesWildlife—Avian (birds)*Wildlife—Fauna (mammals and other wildlife other than birds)* Plants/Fungi*Landscape and Scenic (Must be taken at Loess...
A few sites allow picnicking at designated areas.
Rangers lead wildlife walks, tours and educational programs at many sites. Events may focus on wildflowers or birds or on seasonal spectacles, such as elk bugling or sea turtle nesting. Some programs may be limited in size or require advance registration. See individual websites for details.
Many multi-purpose trails are open to runners and joggers as well as walkers and, in some cases, bicyclists. Some sites host annual fun runs. Check individual refuge websites for details.
Some refuges allow people to forage in designated areas for seasonal nuts, berries and mushrooms.
Many refuges champion wildlife viewing as a key recreational activity.