North Louisiana Wildlife

Follow Us through the Forests and Wetlands

Basic Info about the Refuge

The Red River National Wildlife Refuge in Louisiana is 50,000 acres of trails, forests, and waterways across 5 parishes.

The Red River NWR is composed of five units across five parishes: the Headquarters Unit in Bossier, Bayou Pierre in DeSoto and Red River, C. Bickham Dickson in Caddo, and the  Lower Cane River and Spanish Lakes Lowland Units, both in Natchitoches.

The Headquarters Unit stays busy, and the birds found throughout it will come pretty close to people. The trick is finding a quiet spot to animal watch. Our favorite places at the refuge are looking out at Lake Caroline and hiking the Lake Bluff, Orchard, and River Trails at the Headquarters Unit.

Small birds and squirrels are active all along the trails, especially on cool mornings,  and turtles, gulls, pelicans, and cormorants fly over and hang out in Lake Caroline during much of the year.

During the late spring and summer, you can find skinks along the trails.


Miles of Trails



$ 0

Entry Fee

By The Numbers

Learn more about the refuge.


Days Open


Trails Available

Gulf fritillary butterfly drinking nectar from an orange flowerGulf fritillary butterfly drinking nectar from an orange flower

Gulf Fritillary Butterfly

Headquarters Unit
Adult male broadhead skink on a log in foliageAdult male broadhead skink on a rotting log

Broadhead Skink

Headquarters Unit
White-throated sparrow looking out from its perch on a branchWhite-throated sparrow standing on a limb

White-Throated Sparrow

Headquarters Unit
Northern mockingbird looking upNorthern mockingbird facing away

Northern Mockingbird

Headquarters Unit
Red admiral drinking nectar from a pink flowerRed admiral drinking nectar from a pink flower

Red Admiral Butterfly

Headquarters Unit
Fox squirrel looking out from a tree limbFox squirrel with its eyes closed on a tree limb.

Fox Squirrel

Headquarters Unit
Mourning dove looking from a branchMourning dove looking from a branch

Mourning Dove

Headquarters Unit
Ring-billed gull flying through blue skyRing-billed gull flying through blue sky

Ring-Billed Gull

Headquarters Unit
Carolina wrens foragingCarolina wren perched on an informational plaque about birds

Carolina Wren

Headquarters Unit
American white pelicans flying in a blue skyAmerican white pelicans flying in a blue sky

American Pelicans

Headquarters Unit
Blue-gray gnatcatcher looking out from behind vegetationBlue-gray gnatcatcher looking out from behind vegetation

Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher

Headquarters Unit
Hairy woodpecker foraging in a tree trunkHairy woodpecker foraging in a tree trunk

Hairy Woodpecker

Headquarters Unit
Nonbreeding male rusty blackbird perched in a bare treeFemale rusty blackbird perched on a bare limb

Rusty Blackbird

Headquarters Unit
Female red-winged blackbird perched on a bare limbFlock of male red-winged blackbirds flying through the blue sky

Red-Winged Blackbirds

Headquarters Unit

Turkey Vulture

Headquarters Unit

While we love all our wild friends, the rusty blackbird is our favorite Red River NWR inhabitant. Red River is the first place we met this friend in the wild, and no matter how many other awesome neighbors we meet there, is still our fav from the refuge.

More about How You Can Enjoy the Refuge

Visit Other Areas

The Red River NWR is one of many places you can enjoy our local wildlife. 

Explore North Louisiana's Outdoors.

Learn about national wildlife refuges, Kisatchie National Forest ranger districts, state wildlife management areas, and state parks found throughout North Louisiana.

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