Savor Fall Events on Refuges
A world of seasonal wonders awaits you this fall at a National Wildlife Refuge. The National Wildlife Refuge System, managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is the world’s premier system of public lands and waters set aside to conserve America’s fish, wildlife and plants. There is a National Wildlife Refuge within an hour’s drive of most major cities.
Here is a sampling of early fall events:
Saturday, September 12, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge, Iowa
Take part in the annual Monarch Madness! Staff and volunteers will catch, tag and release as many monarch butterflies as possible.
For more information: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/nealsmith or 5159943400.
Saturday, September 26, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, Washington
Take in a multicultural celebration of the history, economy and environment of the Nisqually River Watershed at the annual Nisqually Watershed Festival. Highlights include tribal drumming and dancing, bagpipers and live animal shows. Kids can take part in critter parades, make salmon art, step inside a 30foot mock salmon and see the world from the perspective of a salmon, and peer at Sound creatures inside a live touch tank. Other events include guided walks and tours and the famous Nisqually Salmon Bake.
For more information: http://www.fws.gov/nisqually or 3607539467.
Flock to a Birding Festival
September 2327National Key Deer National Wildlife Refuge, Florida
Celebrate the 11th Annual Florida Keys Birding and Wildlife Festival with a multitude of activities for all. Take a wildlife photography trip at Crane Point Hammock with featured wildlife photographers Dick Fortune and Sarah Lopez. Then, enjoy a multimedia program on native plants. Participate in a guided birding trip of the Dry Tortugas, part of the refuge. Enjoy an environmental fair with activities for the family at Curry Hammock State Park.
Collect Seeds for National Public Lands Day
Saturday, September 26, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge, Iowa
Help collect prairie seeds and participate in one of the nation’s largest handson volunteer efforts to improve and enhance public lands.
For more information: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/desoto or 7126422772.
Create a Bird Carving from Basswood
Saturday, September 26, 9 a.m.11 a.m Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico. Join artist and master carver Bill Strickler for a lecturedemonstration of his work. Strickler’s detailed wood carvings of many bird species are noted for their attention to detail and realistic settings. The artist will illustrate the steps, beginning with templates and making a pattern to create a finished work using a highspeed wood carving tool. The program is limited to 24 participants. Reservations are required.
For more information: http://www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/newmex/bosque or 5758351828.
Celebrate National Wildlife Refuge Week
From the end of September through the month of October, many National Wildlife Refuges throughout the country offer events, talks and celebrations to mark National Wildlife Refuge Week. Among some of the events planned:
Saturday, September 26 Fall Festival, Tamarac
National Wildlife Refuge, Minnesota. Enjoy educational programs and
family activities. Photo contest winners will be displayed. 10 a.m.
4 p.m. For more information: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/tamarac or 2188472641.
Friday, October 2 Islands & Rivers of Life:
A photo exhibit in Celebration of a Century of Conserving Alaska’s
Wildlife & Wild Lands, Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge
and Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge. 7 p.m., Wendy Williamson Auditorium,
Anchorage. For more information: http://alaskamaritime.fws.gov or 9072264606.
Saturday, October 10 and Sunday, October 11 Birdfest
and Bluegrass Festival, Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, Washington.
Enjoy owl walks, sandhill crane sunrise tours, kayak tours plus indoor
and outdoor music jamming sessions. For more information: http://www.fws.gov/ridgefieldrefuges/ridgefield or 3608873883.
Sunday, October 11 “Big Sit,”
Trinity River National Wildlife Refuge, Texas. Mark off a 17foot diameter
circle, sit down and identify all the birds you see or hear during a
24hour (or less) period. The event is at the Champion Lake pier, 7
a.m. to sunset. For more information: http://www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/texas/trinityriver or 9363369786.
Sunday, October 11 “Big Sit,” Muscatatuck National Wildlife Refuge, Indiana. For more information: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/muscatatuck or 8125224352
Sunday, October 11 “Big Sit,” Red River Red River National Wildlife Refuge, Louisiana. For more information: http://www.fws.gov/northlouisiana/redriver or 3187421219
Saturday, October 17 Annual Fall Celebration,
Black Bayou Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Louisiana. Enjoy family activities
and free fried fish dinners. For more information: http://www.fws.gov/northlouisiana/blackbayoulake or 3183871114.
Saturday, October 17 Annual Wild Things Festival,
Southeast Louisiana Refuges, Lacombe. Attend a festival showcasing eight
National Wildlife Refuges. The festival features speakers, live animals,
wildlife crafts, live entertainment, gardens and grounds tours. Children’s
highlights include the Youth Wildlife Art Show, orienteering, decoy
painting and nature crafts. Wild Things also features canoe and pontoon
boat tours of Bayou Lacombe. For more information: http://www.fws.gov/southeastlouisiana or contact Byron Fortier at