The Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge will be conducting “Wildlife Tours” for the general public during the month of June (see tour schedule for exact dates).
The Wildlife Tours take participants into the Refuge’s Special Use Area during the month of June. These tours were formerly called the ‘Calving Tours’ because June is the ideal time of year to view the newborn calves of the bison and the longhorn. Occasionally, participants may also see elk calves and white-tailed deer fawns that were born in the spring. Viewing other species of wildlife such as coyotes, wild turkeys, red-tailed hawks and collared lizards are not uncommon during the Wildlife Tours. Since all of the wildlife on the Refuge are free to roam in their natural habitat, and Oklahoma’s weather is anything but predictable, wildlife viewing on the Refuge can also be unpredictable.
The tours will begin at the Visitor Center. The Visitor Center location is noted on the Refuge map which is available online or may obtained from one of the dispensers located at each of the five entrances to the Refuge. The tours are conducted by members of the Association of the Friends of the Wichitas.
These programs are intended for individuals and family groups. Reservations are limited to one family (up to six individuals) per telephone call. Children must be at least eight years old. Restrooms are not available on the tours. Wheelchair access is available if requested at the time of reservation. Refuge tours are dependent upon wildlife and weather conditions. Tours may be cancelled or modified if adverse conditions exist. Program dates are tentative as of 1/1/2020.
Reservations are required. Reservations will be retained until 10 minutes before each scheduled program’s start time. After that time, stand-bys will be accepted. If the bus seating is filled after accepting stand-bys, late arrivals with reservations will not be able to participate in the program. For reservations call (580) 429-2197, weekdays from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, starting on the reservation date indicated. For additional information visit: www.fws.gov/refuge/Wichita_Mountains/