Laws and Regulations

This page of regulations applies to public use of Waterfowl Production Areas  in the Rainwater Basin Wetland Management District (WMD).

HUNTING, FISHING, AND TRAPPING:  Hunting, fishing, and trapping are allowed according to current State of Nebraska regulations concerning these activities. The use or possession of shotshells loaded with other than non-toxic shot is prohibited. Consult the current State of Nebraska regulations for hunting, fishing, and trapping for additional information. Copies may be obtained from your local Nebraska Game and Parks Commission office or on the Internet at the following address:

BLACK-TAILED PRAIRIE DOGS (Cynomys ludovicianus):  Due to the small and isolated populations of black-tailed prairie dogs which exist on waterfowl production area waterfowl production area
Waterfowl production areas are small natural wetlands and grasslands within the National Wildlife Refuge System that provide breeding, resting and nesting habitat for millions of waterfowl, shorebirds, grassland birds and other wildlife. Virtually all waterfowl production areas are in the Prairie Pothole Region states of Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota.

Learn more about waterfowl production area
, the shooting or harvesting of black-tailed prairie dogs is not allowed. 


ACCESSIBLE BLINDS:  An accessible blind is found on Funk Waterfowl Production Area in Phelps County. There are no reservations for these blinds; however, priority is given to those with a disability. When not in use, they are available on a first come, first serve basis. 

PETS: The use of hunting dogs to find and retrieve downed game is encouraged. All pets must be kept under the immediate control of the owner. Exercising, running, training, or hunting with dogs is prohibited May 1 through July 31.

HORSES: The use of horses is not allowed 

CAMPING: No overnight camping is allowed.

MOTORIZED VEHICLES: The use of all motorized vehicles, including all-terrain vehicles, is restricted to parking lots only.

BOATS: Boats are allowed while engaged in permitted public use activities. All non-powered and those powered by electric boat motors are allowed. Operation of gasoline motors is not allowed.

BLINDS: The use of temporary blinds is allowed. Any materials brought in from offsite for use in constructing a blind must be removed daily. Temporary blinds, constructed of small amounts of natural vegetation found on site, may be left overnight. These temporary blinds are available on a first come, first serve basis and cannot be used to reserve a location.

DECOYS: All decoys and any other hunting supplies must be removed daily.

TREE STANDS: The use of temporary tree stands and steps is allowed. No nails, wires, bolts, or other means of permanently attaching a stand or steps to a tree is allowed. However, you must remove them along with any other personal property at the end of each day.

FIRES AND FIREWORKS: No open fires are allowed. The use or possession of fireworks is prohibited.

TARGET SHOOTING: The use of all firearms for target practice is prohibited.

POSSESSION OF FIREARMS: Persons possessing, transporting, or carrying firearms on National Wildlife Refuge System lands must comply with all provisions of State and local law. Persons may only use (discharge) firearms in accordance with refuge regulations (50 CFR 27.42 and specific refuge regulations in 50 CFR Part 32).

ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES: The use or possession of alcoholic beverages while hunting is prohibited.

PACK IT IN- PACK IT OUT: There are no trash facilities on site. Please take all garbage and other refuse with you and dispose of properly. Take pride in your Waterfowl Production Areas and help keep them clean.

OBSERVATION OF VIOLATIONS: If you observe a violation of these regulations, or any other violations of federal, state, or local laws or regulations, please report them immediately. You may contact the Nebraska Wildlife Crimestoppers Hotline at 1-800-742-7627, your local County Sheriff by calling 911, or the Rainwater Basin Wetland Management District at (308)263-3000. Information such as a legal description, violation observed, and identifying information such as a license plate will be very helpful in contacting the suspect. Do not jeopardize your safety in any way to obtain this information.

SPECIAL USE PERMITS: A use not listed above may be allowed. However, if allowed, it will require a Special Use Permit. The permit can be requested from the Rainwater Basin District Office.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Additional information can be obtained by contacting staff at Rainwater Basin District office at 308-263-3000 or PO BOX 8, Funk, Nebraska 68940-0008.

To report a violation, please contact our office at 308-263-3000, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission at 1-800-742-7627, or the US Fish and Wildlife TIPs line at 1-844-FWS-TIPS (397-8477).

Federal Register Notices, Laws, Treaties, and Regulations List

This is not an all inclusive list.

The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act directs the Secretary of the Interior to undertake research and conservation activities, in coordination with other Federal, State, international and private organizations, to fulfill responsibilities to conserve migratory nongame birds under existing...

The Migratory Bird Conservation Act authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to conduct investigations and publish documents related to North American birds, and establishes a Migratory Bird Conservation Commission (MBCC) to approve areas recommended by the Secretary for acquisition. The MBCC...

The Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp Act, commonly referred to as the Duck Stamp Act, requires waterfowl hunters, 16 years of age or older, to purchase and possess a valid Federal waterfowl hunting stamp prior to taking migratory waterfowl. Receipts from the sale of the stamp are...

The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 (16 U.S.C. 703-712) implements four international conservation treaties that the U.S. entered into with Canada in 1916, Mexico in 1936, Japan in 1972, and Russia in 1976. It is intended to ensure the sustainability of populations of all protected migratory...

An aerial view of pelican island.

The National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act provides authority, guidelines and directives for the Service to improve the National Wildlife Refuge System; administers a national network of lands and waters for the conservation, management, and restoration of fish, wildlife and plant...

The National Wildlife Refuge Volunteer Improvement Act authorizes cooperative agreements with nonprofit partner organizations, academic institutions, or State and local governments to construct, operate, maintain, or improve refuge facilities and services, and to promote volunteer, outreach, and...