Coronavirus (COVID-19) Notice
Although most refuge lands and outdoor spaces have remained open for the public to enjoy, we encourage you to:

  • Check local conditions on this website and call ahead for current information
  • Follow current CDC safe practices by maintaining a safe distance between yourself and other groups
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze
  • Most importantly, stay home if you feel sick


  • Burrowing Owl Promo

    Burrowing Owls

    Looking for all the world like a child's cute stuffed toy, burrowing owls are beloved residents of the shrub-steppe.

    Burrowing Owls

  • Badger Promo


    Tough, grizzled, occasionally grouchy, the badger is the curmudgeon next door—gruff but a good guy with an interesting life story to tell.


  • Mule Deer Promo

    Mule Deer Photo Gallery

    You'll see a lot of mule deer here. There's a good reason for that—Umatilla has one of the most impressive mule deer herds found anywhere.

    Mule Deer Photo Gallery

Refuge Happenings

Waterfowl & Upland Game Bird Hunting

September 9, 2016 Hunting Lottery

Please review the following updates at the Umatilla NWR McCormack Unit Hunter Check Station. These changes are in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and will allow us to adhere to federal, state, and local public health authority guidance. • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant blinds will only be issued to hunters with a disability and up to 3 guests. • The Hunter Check Stations will close at 8:00 a.m. and will not reopen to issue new blinds or to allow morning hunters to switch blinds. Afternoon hunting will remain open for individuals who stay in their assigned blinds, and upland hunters. Waterfowl hunters will continue to have access to the first-come first-served blinds and free roam opportunities on other units subject to the regulations for each unit. See the individual unit Tear Sheets for more information. • One hunter per party will choose a blind from the Check Station Attendant and pay for all members of the party. All other hunters will remain in their vehicles and will not need to provide identification to the check station attendant. • Checks or exact change ONLY. No change will be issued at the Hunter Check Station. • The lottery winners and standby representatives will form two separate lines, clearly marked at the check station. Lottery draw winners will move through the line in order when called by the Check Station Attendant. The standby representative will place their name on the standby list and wait to be called by the Check Station Attendant after all lottery winners have been issued blinds. • Hunters will fill out their own permit card with the names of everyone in their party and the Check Station Attendant will stamp the permit card. • There will not be a volunteer supported blind brush-up day this season. Adherence to these changes will allow FWS to follow state guidelines and continue to offer a high-quality waterfowl hunt for the public. Remember, upland hunting on the Umatilla McCormack Unit will commence at 12:00 noon on opening day of waterfowl season, October 17, 2020. Good luck and thank you for supporting your National Wildlife Refuge.

Waterfowl & Upland Game Bird Hunting
Be Careful . . .

Watch For Wildlife


The days are turning shorter and the nights colder. Fall is the time of year when wildlife is on the move, preparing for a difficult winter. While winters in the Columbia Basin aren’t that stressful to wildlife, nonetheless creatures here follow the natural instincts of their kind everywhere and are on the move preparing for winter. This is also the time of year when young are dispersing, leaving their birthplace to find territories of their own. Drivers need to slow down and keep a constant watch for wildlife. Haven’t you noticed more dead animals along the road lately? There’s always an upswing of wildlife-vehicle collisions in the fall. So, if getting home 23 seconds sooner is worth squashing a squirrel, mangling a marmot, bashing a beaver, or demolishing a deer, then by all means, keep driving like you’re on the NASCAR circuit. Apart from the permanent damage to wildlife, you’ll incur several hundred dollars worth of damage to your car. So, why don’t you just follow the traffic laws instead? Both your fellow drivers and our wildlife will thank you.

About the Complex

Mid-Columbia River National Wildlife Refuge Complex

Umatilla National Wildlife Refuge is managed as part of the Mid-Columbia River National Wildlife Refuge Complex.

Read more about the complex
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