National Wildlife Refuges Host Winter Events

This winter, take a horse-drawn sleigh ride past an elk herd numbering in the thousands at the National Elk Refuge in Jackson Hole, Wyo. © 2011 Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

It is always a good season to visit a national wildlife refuge. Go for a hike. Sight a bird. Restore your sense of wonder. 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 upcoming refuge events:

Strap on Your Skis
Now thru mid-March — Horicon National Wildlife Refuge, WI
Hike, snowshoe, x-country ski Horicon Refuge for wildlife watching & photography. Learn more about Horicon Refuge.

Take a Sleigh Ride
Now thru March, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily — National Elk Refuge, WY
Take a horse-drawn sleigh ride past an elk herd numbering in the thousands. Reservations needed. Buy tickets (adults $18; ages 5-12 $14; under 5 free) at the Jackson Hole and Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center, 532 North Cache Street, several blocks north of Jackson’s Town Square. Visitor Center hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Sleigh rides last about one hour, including the shuttle ride to and from the sleigh ride site. Accommodations for visitors with disabilities. Learn more about National Elk Refuge.

Join an Eagle Watch
Friday, January 7, and Saturday, January 8, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. — Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, OK
Learn about eagles, then take a hayride to an eagle hotspot to see eagles fly in to roost for the evening. Reservations are required. Wear warm, neutral-colored clothing. Bring a thermos or hot mug. Hot chocolate provided. To reserve, call 580-626-4794 or email: fw2_rw_saltplains@fws.gov. Learn more about Salt Plains Refuge.

Enjoy a Winter Nature Film Series
Friday, January 7, and every other Friday through mid-March, 1:30 p.m.Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Come out of the cold and enjoy a series of fascinating nature films. The series runs every other Friday until March 18. Learn more about Assabet River Refuge.

Enjoy Scout Day
Saturday, January 8, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. — Deer Flat National Wildlife Refuge, ID
Take a hike! Make a nature craft! Earn a wildlife badge! Meet other scouts (girl scouts, boy scouts, cub scouts) and have fun. Scout Day is held October through May, usually on the first Saturday of each month. Registration required. To reserve, call 208-467-9278. Learn more about Deer Flat Refuge.

Take a Hike with a Refuge Ranger
Sunday, January 9, 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. — Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Join a refuge ranger for a walk of the refuge and learn about our local wildlife. Some binoculars and wildlife guides are available on loan. Meet in the visitor center at 680 Hudson Road, Sudbury, MA. Learn more about Assabet River Refuge.

Enjoy a Wildlife Lecture
Tuesday, January 11, 7 p.m. — Deer Flat National Wildlife Refuge, ID
Talks in the Wild about Life Lecture Series are held October through May, usually on the second Tuesday of the month. Learn more about Deer Flat Refuge.

Enjoy a Refuge Tour
Sunday, January 10, 11 a.m. to noon — Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Join a winter hike to discover the history of Parker River and Plum Island. View the last private home on the refuge and learn how the refuge was established to protect habitat for wildlife. Space limited to 10 participants. Meet at refuge Parking Lot 1. Learn more about Parker River Refuge.

Join an Eagle Watch
Friday, January 14, and Saturday, January 15, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. — Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, OK
See event description for Friday, January 7, and Saturday, January 8. Learn more about Salt Plains Refuge.

Take an Eagle Tour
Fridays through the end of February, 8 a.m. and noon — Reelfoot National Wildlife Refuge, TN
Join small free tours along Grassy Island Wildlife Drive, and enjoy close-up views of two active bald eagle nesting sites. Look out over scenic Reelfoot Lake, where you may see coots, bald eagles and a variety of waterfowl. The tour will also stop at our Long Point unit, where thousands of geese and ducks congregate to feed. Dress warmly. Tours last about two hours. To reserve, call 731-538-2481. Call ahead to request loaner binoculars. Learn more about Reelfoot Refuge.

Take Part in a Homeschool Nature Program
Friday, January 22, 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. — Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Introduce your homeschooler to the art and science of tracking wildlife. Children, ages 6 to 10, will become wildlife detectives and explore the clues animals leave behind. Program will include both indoor and outdoor activities. Learn more about Parker River Refuge.

Attend the Galt Winter Bird Festival
Saturday, January 29, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. — Stone Lakes National Wildlife Refuge, CA
Celebrate wintering Central Valley migratory birds at the Galt Winter Bird Festival. The festival offers exhibits, workshops and tours to local refuges, including Stone Lakes National Wildlife Refuge. To sign-up for a tour, visit the City of Galt websiteor call 209-366-7115.

Take Part in a Homeschool Nature Program
Saturday, January 30, 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. — Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Introduce your homeschooler to the art and science of tracking wildlife. Children, ages 6 to 10, will become wildlife detectives and explore the clues animals leave behind. Program will include both indoor and outdoor activities. Learn more about Parker River Refuge.

Take a Hike with a Refuge Ranger
Sunday, January 30, 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. — Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
See event description for Sunday, January 9. Learn more about Assabet River Refuge.

Attend Winterfest
Saturday, February 5, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge, MN
Free activities focus on how wildlife and people deal with the snow and cold. Try out snowshoes. Enjoy exhibits, nature crafts, face painting, food, sleigh rides, a bonfire and wildlife presentations. Learn more about Sherburne Refuge.

Go on an Owl Prowl
Friday, February 18, 8:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. — Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge, MA
Explore the fascinating world of owls in New England. Hear a talk on owl characteristics and identification of owls in Massachusetts. Then head out on refuge trails to locate some local owls by sight and sound. Bring a headlamp or flashlight. Reserve a space by 4 p.m. Thursday, February 17; only 30 spots available. To register, call 978-562-3527, ext. 115 or 117. Learn more about Assabet River Refuge.

See a complete list of refuge activities and special events.

About these ads

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 59 other followers

%d bloggers like this: