Sauta Cave National Wildlife Refuge
Southeast Region
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Sauta Cave lower entrance. Credit: USFWS

Sauta Cave lower entrance. Credit: USFWS

Question: Where is Sauta Cave National Wildlife Refuge?

        Answer: Sauta Cave NWR is located just above the Sauty Creek embayment on TVA's Guntersville Reservoir, 7 miles west of Scottsboro in Jackson County, Alabama. There is an entrance gate to the Refuge on the south side of U.S. Highway 72.

Question: Is the cave open to the public?

        Answer: Sauta Cave itself is gated and not open to the public due to the potential for disturbance of federally endangered gray bats. Other portions of the 264-acre refuge are open to the public. Persons wishing to visit the cave may park outside the Refuge entrance gate and walk in to the cave entrance.

Question: What is there to see and do at Sauta Cave NWR?

        Answer: Hiking, wildlife observation, and wildlife photography are all activities that are available to the public.

Question: How can I see the bats emerging from the cave?

        Answer: Sauta Cave NWR serves as a major maternity cave for gray bats where recent counts have documented up to 400,000 emerging from the cave. This natural phenomenon only occurs June -August and lasts for approximately one hour near dusk. To view bats emerging from the cave, park at the Refuge entrance gate and walk approximately 100 yards to the cave entrance on your right. A new wildlife viewing platform is available to watch the emergence. Remember to bring your umbrella.


Last updated: June 15, 2009