Description - Lower Klamath NWR was the nation's first waterfowl refuge with 53,598 acres of water, marsh, agricultural crops and uplands. It is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Copyright: - US Fish and Wildlife Service
Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuges
- Lower Klamath NWR was the nation's first waterfowl refuge with 53,598 acres of water, marsh, agricultural crops and uplands. It is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places as both a National Historic Landmark and a National Natural Landmark. The refuge is a varied mix of shallow marshes, open water, grassy uplands, and croplands that are used by waterfowl and colonial birds for resting, feeding, nesting, and brood rearing. It's productivity, size, and diversity of the wetland habitats make this one of the premier refuges in the system.
The refuge has a peak of nearly 1 million waterfowl using the combined areas of Lower Klamath and Tule Lake as a major production area during fall migration. Predominant nesting species include gadwall, mallard, cinnamon teal, pintail, ruddy ducks and Canada geese. There are large summer populations of white pelicans, cormorants, herons, egrets, terns, white-faced ibis, grebes, gulls, avocets, black-necked stilts and killdeer. It also has the largest wintering concentration of bald eagles (500+) in the lower 48 States, using the combined areas as daily feeding grounds.
Recreation - Recreation activities include wildlife observation, study, and photography. A number of photo blinds are strategically situated for great early morning photography. There is a 10-mile gravel auto tour route, giving access to the heart of the refuge. Hunting for geese, ducks (including mergansers), coots, moorhens, snipe, and pheasant is also permitted.
Climate - The weather in northeastern California is particularly unpredictable and visitors should be ready for all conditions throughout the year. The variable climate ranges from warm, dry summers to cold, severe, moderately wet winters. Temperatures range from highs of over 100 F for a few weeks intermittently each summer, although they can drop to below freezing every month of the year. Winter temperatures reach as low as -35 F, although common daytime temperatures rise to the 30's and 40's.
The refuge is located on the California-Oregon border, 24 miles south of Klamath Falls, Oregon. This refuge has several entrances - please write for a map.