• Proposes Changes to Fishing Program

    The refuge is proposing to open refuge lands and waters to public recreational fishing and is seeking public comment on the changes.

    To access the documents and to learn more..

  • Calendar Blackburnian

    Spring 2019 Public Programs

    The public program schedule for April and May 2019 is now available. Call 419-898-0014 to register for events marked with an *.

    Spring 2019 Public Programs

  • Rotator Item Cardinal

    January to March Program Schedule

    There are lots of opportunities to explore the refuge as we enjoy winter. Please pay special attention to holiday closings.

    January to March Program Schedule

  • Artist-in-Residence

    Professional artists are invited to share their discipline while surrounded by nature. Email ottawa@fws.gov for an application.

    Artist-in-Residence Flyer


Refuge Hiring Youth Ages 15-18


The Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) Program introduces young adults, 15-18 years of age, to the important work being done by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and to meaningful experiences in America’s Great Outdoors. YCC members will assist refuge personnel with a diverse range of projects, including: •Wildlife Research •Trail Maintenance and Visitor Access Projects •Environmental Education and Recreation Programs •Grounds and Building Maintenance

More Information

Invasive Plant Found on Refuge

Japanese sliltgrass has been discovered in the area. Help us stop the spread.

Learn More

Wildlife Drive Dates


Enjoy the refuge from the comfort of you car! The 7 mile route departs from the visitor center entrance road. Gates open at sunrise and close one hour prior to sunset. The Wildlife Drive is only open seasonally and on specified dates. Upcoming dates are March 16, 17, April 20, 21, May 3-19, 25-27. For more events on the refuge see the calendar in the link below.

Spring 2019 Program Calendar
Partners for Fish and Wildlife

Partners for Fish and Wildlife

Wetland Restoration

The Partners for Fish & Wildlife program works with private landowners to improve fish and wildlife habitat on their lands. We are leaders in voluntary, community-based stewardship for fish and wildlife conservation. The future of the nation’s fish and wildlife depends on private landowners – more than 90% of land in the Midwest is in private ownership. Providing more high quality habitat not only helps wildlife - by contributing to a healthy landscape, you create a conservation legacy to pass on to future generations. Partnerships are the key! To accomplish this work, we team up with private conservation organizations, state and federal agencies and tribes. Together, with the landowner, this collective shares funding, materials, equipment, labor and expertise to meet both the landowner’s restoration goals and our conservation mission.

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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