Updated July 15, 2024


  • WE ARE HIRING: GS-12 Supervisory Wildland Firefighter (Fire Management Officer). Apply for this opportunity by July 26, 2024. More info on our Get Involved page!
  • COLUSA AUTO TOUR CLOSURE: Monday July 15 through Thursday July 18, the Colusa NWR Auto Tour Route will be closed for repairs. Thank you for your understanding while we complete this important work! 

CDFW Soliciting Recommendations for Sacramento Valley Wildlife Areas and Federal Refuges: 

  • The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), along with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), will hold an online outreach meeting to take comments and recommendations regarding hunting programs in the Northern Sacramento Valley from licensed hunters. The meeting will include updates on habitat conditions, availability of water for wetlands, Avian Influenza, and hunting access opportunities.
  • State lands to be discussed include the Gray Lodge and Upper Butte Basin wildlife areas including the Little Dry Creek, Howard Slough, and Llano Seco units. Federal refuge personnel will also be available to speak about the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge Complex including Delevan, Sacramento, Colusa, and Sutter NWRs.
  • The meeting will be held using Microsoft Teams from 4 to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, August 27, 2024. Please email Gray Lodge Wildlife Area at glwla@wildlife.ca.gov for a link and instructions on how to submit comments and questions.
  • CDFW annually provides an opportunity for licensed hunters to comment and make recommendations on public hunting programs, including anticipated habitat conditions in the hunting areas on Type A wildlife areas through public meetings and outreach.
Steve Thompson North Central Valley Wildlife Management Area is part of the SACRAMENTO NWR COMPLEX. Steve Thompson NCV WMA consists primarily of conservation easements on privately-owned wetlands, but also includes one 1,732-acre, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service-owned property known as the Llano Seco Unit. The Llano Seco Unit offers wildlife viewing, a short walking trail and photographic opportunities for visitors.

Visit Us

Welcome to Steve Thompson North Central Valley Wildlife Management Area (including the Llano Seco Unit)!   

Steve Thompson North Central Valley Wildlife Management Area is one of the 5 National Wildlife Refuges and 3 Wildlife Management Areas that make up the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge Complex:  Sacramento NWR, Delevan NWR, Colusa NWR, Sutter NWR, Sacramento River NWR, Llano Seco Unit (STNCV WMA), Butte Sink WMA, Willow Creek-Lurline WMA. This WMA is primarily composed of privately-owned properties under conservation easement conservation easement
A conservation easement is a voluntary legal agreement between a landowner and a government agency or qualified conservation organization that restricts the type and amount of development that may take place on a property in the future. Conservation easements aim to protect habitat for birds, fish and other wildlife by limiting residential, industrial or commercial development. Contracts may prohibit alteration of the natural topography, conversion of native grassland to cropland, drainage of wetland and establishment of game farms. Easement land remains in private ownership.

Learn more about conservation easement
, but does have one Service-owned property that is open to the public: the Llano Seco Unit.  Located about 10 miles southwest of the city of Chico in Butte County, the Llano Seco Unit offers opportunities for photography, wildlife viewing and a 1-mile trail.

There are LOTS of recreational opportunities across the Complex, including a Visitor Center, Auto Tours, trails, bicycling, photography, hunting and environmental education.

VISIT US!  <-- Click here to find all the information you need to plan your visit!  Or use the quicklinks, below...


Location and Contact Information

      About Us

      TheSteve Thompson North Central Valley Wildlife Management Areais part of the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge Complex.  It is located across 11 counties in California's Sacramento Valley and San Joaquin Delta.  It consists primarily of conservation easements on privately-owned wetlands, but also includes one 1,732 acre fee-title property known as theLlano Seco Unit .

      Click on the link below to learn more about us!

      What We Do

      • Resource Management

      To help plants and wildlife, Refuge staff uses a variety of habitat management techniques to maintain, recover or enhance plant and wildlife values. Refuge staff carefully consider any management techniques and employ them in varying degrees according to the situation.

      • Conservation and Partnerships

      The Complex is involved in many conservation endeavors, including Comprehensive Conservation Plans, Private Landowner Programs, and the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act.

      Click on the link below to learn more about what we do!

      Our Species

      The Llano Seco Unit supports large populations of wintering waterfowl, as well as other species such as: bald eagle, mountain lion, bobcat, State-listed threatened greater sandhill cranes, Swainson's hawk, federally threatened giant garter snakes and valley elderberry longhorn beetle, federally endangered vernal pool tadpole shrimp and vernal pool fairy shrimp, and species of concern California linderiella and Ferris's milk-vetch.

      Click on the link below to learn more about our Seasons of Wildlife, Wildlife Checklist, Wildlife Surveys, and Our Species....