National Wildlife Refuge System
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June 2012 Events

Two children enjoy a hike in the woods.  On June 16, a forester and naturalist will take visitors on a guided hike of a forested trail at Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Maryland.

One of two historic lighthouses on Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge’s Lighthouse Island, this 1827 light will be the focus of a tour on June 10 in South Carolina.

Credit: Steve Hillebrand/USFWS

Tour de Marsh
Saturday, June 2, all day — Horicon National Wildlife Refuge, WI 
Explore the marsh by bicycle. Start at your leisure from any location. Refreshments and information stations will be set up at points throughout the marsh and local communities.

Bald Eagle Walk and Learn
Saturday, June 2, 9 a.m. to noon — John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge, PA
Take a guided two-mile walk to see the refuge’s bald eagles and their fast-growing offspring. Learn how these iconic raptors have made a remarkable recovery from the edge of extinction. Wear sturdy shoes and bring a water bottle. Meet at the visitor center.

Nature Walks
Saturday, June 2, 9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m. — Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge, MD
Take a guided nature walk through areas usually closed to the public. Wear sturdy shoes. Bring water, sunscreen, bug repellant and a snack.

Bay Bike Ride
Saturday, June 2, 10:30 a.m. — Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge, CA
Go on an 11-mile bike ride with refuge staff along Marshlands Road and on the Shoreline Trail to observe birds and the occasional leopard shark. Pass through several habitat types including salt marsh, salt pond, and the bay. Helmets are required. Recommended for experienced bicyclists. Register: 510-792-0222.

Guided Moonlight Canoe Trip
Saturday, June 2 to Sunday, June 3, 7 to 10 p.m. — Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge, FL
Enjoy a moonlight canoe tour through the refuge interior, in the northernmost reaches of the Everglades. Wear long-sleeved shirt and long pants and bring a flashlight and bug spray. Fee: $10 per person. Canoe rental required; fee includes rental. Reservations: 561-733-0192.

Upper Mississippi River Refuge Bike and Paddle
Saturday, June 2, 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. ─ Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife & Fish Refuge, MN
Celebrate National Trails Day and the Mississippi River Bike Trail by biking, then paddling, around the Weaver Dunes area. Bring your own bike. Canoes are provided. Lunch is provided by the Friends of the Refuge Headwaters. Meet at Halfmoon Landing in Kellogg, MN for this event, one of a series of Summer of Paddling 2012 events. Ages 12 and up. Pre-registration is required:  Contact Ranger Ed Lagace at 507-494-6236 or

Making Tracks: National Trails Day Hike
Saturday, June 2, 7 to 9 a.m. ─ Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge, MN
Sense the pulse of migrating and year-round residents of Long Meadow Lake while improving your powers of observation and your health. Take a long hike through the river valley and wind around the wetlands, exploring some of Minnesota Valley's best habitat. Come prepared for brisk walking with frequent stops. Meet: Bloomington Visitor Center

Full-Moon Hike
Monday, June 4, 8:30 to 10 p.m. ─ Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, WA
Listen for owls and coyotes. Sign up: 360-887-3883

Burke County Birding Festival    
June 8-9, 2012 — Lostwood National Wildlife Refuge, ND
Free birding festival focuses on grassland species, especially sparrows. Enjoy youth activities and a prairie wildflower walk.

Let’s Explore After Dark
Saturday, June 9, 7:30 to 10 p.m. — Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, NV
Go on a nocturnal adventure, including a scorpion search, bat identification lesson, and more. Register: 775-372-5435 or

Saturday, June 9, 10 a.m. — Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge, TX
Come learn about the butterflies of North Texas.

Capturing the Outdoors in Photographs
Saturday, June 9, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. — Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, WA
Saturday, June 23, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Learn outdoor photo techniques and tips from photographer Greg Farley. Workshop participants will learn camera operations, then head outside to apply what they’ve learned. Bring your camera (film, DSLR, or point and shoot), extra batteries and a sense of adventure.

Cape Romain Historic Lighthouse Tour
Sunday, June 10, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  ─ Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge, SC
Learn the history of the lights at the Sewee Visitor and Environment Education Center. Then travel to McClellanville to board the Island Cat Ferry to Lighthouse Island. The island is located in a National Wilderness Area, and the trip takes you through a pristine salt marsh and estuary with opportunities to view shorebirds, seabirds and dolphins. Boat space is limited and reservations are required: 843-928-3368.

On the Trails of Edible Weeds
Sunday, June 10, 2 p.m. — Oxbow National Wildlife, MA
Learn how to recognize what parts of a weed are edible and where to look for them. Staff will provide some culinary tips as well. Register: Rosa Balco, 978-779-2259

Assabet Youth Stewards Interest Meeting
Thursday, June 14, 7 to 7:45 p.m. — Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Try your hand at being a refuge ranger in this new summer volunteer program for ages 12 to 29.  Groups will be formed around a refuge project. Meetings and field trips will continue throughout the summer. Contact: Kizette Ortiz-Vanger at 978-562-3527 ext. 117 or

Forest Hike
Saturday, June 16, 1 to 3 p.m. — Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, MD
Take a guided hike of a forest trail. Learn about tree identification, forest structure and forest management. Also learn about the shrubs and birds you encounter along the way. Binoculars are recommended.

The Nisqually Delta and Medicine Creek: Where Nature, Culture and History Converge
Sunday, June 17, 1 to 2:30 p.m. ─ Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, WA
On this historic tour, learn about the events surrounding the signing of the Medicine Creek Treaty, and explore how the Nisqually people came to the Nisqually Delta and how their lives changed with the settlement of Europeans.

Owls Underground
Sunday, June 17, 8 to 10 a.m.  ─ Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge, CO
Sunday, June 24, 8 to 10 a.m.
What a hoot! Unlike other owls, burrowing owls are active during the day. Adults stand only eight inches tall. See these unique owls. Reservations are required: 303-289-0930.

Going Wild: Rail to Refuge
Monday, June 18, 1 to 4 p.m. ─ Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge, MN
Ride with a ranger on the Hiawatha Light Rail and find out how easy it is to access one of our wildest natural areas via mass transit. Visit the refuge and learn about the long history of natural resource conservation in this major metropolitan area. Meet at the Nicollet Mall Light Rail Station in downtown Minneapolis and come prepared for a scenic tour, ranger program and guided hike on the refuge.
Adult fares are $1.75-$2.25.  

Go Wild Summer Camp (Ages 8-12)
Tuesday, June 19 and Wednesday, June 20, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. ─ Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge, CO
Make like a refuge naturalist and explore the places where refuge wildlife live. Register: 303-289-0391.

Duck Nest Island Adventures
Wednesday, June 20, 9 to 10:30 a.m. — Audubon National Wildlife Refuge, ND
Enjoy a pontoon ride to Lake Audubon’s “Pancake Island” for an up-close look at duck nests and young ducklings. Participants can candle eggs and learn about incubation. Register: 701-442-5474

Down and Dirty Garden Party
Wednesday, June 20, 9:30 a.m. — Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, DE
Help perform seasonal maintenance on the visitor center grounds. Then head to a private garden to help divide and pot plants to take home to your own garden. A complimentary luncheon is included. Register: 302-653-6449 or

Summer Solstice Kayak Trip
Wednesday, June 20, 6 to 8 p.m. — Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge, MD
Join Friends of Eastern Neck and the Center for Environment & Society of Washington College for a kayak trip through the refuge. Bring your own kayak, lifejacket and paddle. Register: 410-778-7295 or

Riverfest: Family Fishing Event
Saturday, June 23, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. — Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Join refuge staff for a day of fishing fun. Learn how to fly-cast, spin-cast and even tie your own fly. All equipment will be provided. Join in live music, games, crafts, and face painting, or go for a hike on the Weir Hill and Red Maple Trails to discover the variety of riverine habitats on the refuge.

Children’s Fishing Day
Saturday, June 23, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. — Seney National Wildlife Refuge, MI  (Up to age 16)
Youngsters compete for fishing prizes. Some fishing poles are available for loan. Family games and activities begin at noon. Shore fishing is allowed in designated pools. Lead sinkers are not allowed. A complimentary fish dinner will be served to all participants and their families at 3 p.m.

Forest Hike
Saturday, June 23, 1 to 3 p.m. — Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, MD
Learn about tree identification, forest structure and forest management on a guided hike of a forested trail. Also, get to know the shrubs and birds you encounter along the way. Binoculars are recommended. Meet at the Blackwater Woods Trail at 1 p.m.

Pollinator Week
Sunday, June 24, 9 to 10:30 a.m. — San Diego National Wildlife Refuge, CA
Celebrate pollinators with an entomologist at the Par 4 Drive trailhead.

Nature Yoga
Sunday, June 24, 10 to 11:30 a.m. — Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge, CA
Enjoy the benefits of yoga outdoors with great views of the salt marsh. Through story and postures, learn what attracted people and wildlife to the bay. The yoga site is a short hike from the visitor center. Bring a yoga mat. Wear comfortable clothing. All ages and abilities welcome. Register: 510-792-0222 ext. 363.

Family Fishing Day
Saturday, June 30, 9:30 a.m. to noon — John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge, PA
Discover how much fun fishing can be. All equipment is provided. Children will learn basic fishing skills such as how to bait a hook, cast a line and remove a fish once it’s caught. They will also learn knot tying, and fish identification. No license is required. All children must be accompanied by an adult, and vice versa.  

Celebrating 40 Years of Conservation
Saturday, June 30, 1 to 3 p.m.  — John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge, PA
Celebrate the refuge’s 40th anniversary with a look at stories and images recalling the refuge’s efforts to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats. If you have a memory or story to share, please email it to

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