In 1986 Ozark Plateau National Wildlife Refuge was established to prevent the extinction and aid in the recovery of federally listed threatened and endangered Ozark species. The refuge spans nine units over four counties with over 4,300 acres, all of which is off limits to visitation. Education and research are both conducted on the refuge, by permit only, to help better protect this fragile ecosystem. Cave gates help preserve some of the rich underground species that could get stressed from unwanted explores.

Visit Us

Ozark Plateau National Wildlife Refuge is accessible by permit only for education and research. Hunting is allowed in designated areas.

Location and Contact Information

      Our Species

      • The Ozark big-eared bat (Corynorhinus townsendii ingens) is very small in its estimated population of about 1,800.  
      • The gray bat (Myotis grisescens) feed on flying insects over bodies of water including rivers, streams, lakes and reservoirs. 
      • The Oklahoma cave crayfish (Cambarus tartarus) is a rare species of cave crayfish that is fully adapted to life in caves.