Wandering Lizard
Central California

An Online Magazine with Information relating to attractions, lodging, dining,
and travel resources in selected areas of the Western United States

Kern National Wildlife Refuge

Kern National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) is located nineteen miles west of Delano and five miles east of Lost Hills at the southern end of the San Joaquin Valley in Central California. Most visitors will probably access the refuge from Interstate Highway 5 or State Highway 99. It is easy to find.

Kern NWR is composed of just over eleven thousand acres of mixed desert uplands and developed marsh. It is an important stop for many birds migrating along the Pacific Flyway. Several species nest there as well. The refuge lists 28 mammals and 226 birds that are known to use the refuge. The visit depicted here took place in early January. There were plenty of birds.

There are two auto tour routes through the refuge and hiking is permitted in several areas. Fish and Game, which manages the refuge, advises that birding is best from October through March. Hunting selected species of birds is also permitted on specific days during the appropriate season. On hunting days, non-hunters are not permitted to visit the refuge.

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