A woman in a red jacket looks through a camera at an overlook


Perhaps the fastest growing activity on national wildlife refuges in the past decade has been wildlife photography. That’s not surprising – the digital camera population explosion and smart phones with ever-improving picture-taking abilities are increasing the number of nature photographers at a rapid rate. You don’t need to purchase expensive equipment or have any experience to get started. A small camera or basic smart phone will do fine for most visitors.

Millions of people visit outdoor areas each year to photograph wildlife, and national wildlife refuges naturally are at the top of the list. Refuges provide enhanced opportunities to photograph wildlife in natural habitats by providing platforms, brochures, interpreters, viewing areas, and tour routes. Wildlife photography is a high-priority activity in the Refuge System. We welcome beginning and expert photographers alike to record their outdoor adventures on film, memory card or internal hard drive. 

Note: portraiture and other organized photo activities require a Special Use Permit.
Related Documents
Turnbull NWR - Visitor Use Map (508)

Map of the public use area inside of Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge

Laws, rules, and regulations