35,000 Acres of Natural Splendor

Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge encompasses 35,000-acres of naturally preserved woodlands offering a unique opportunity to experience wildlife in its natural habitat. Established in 1938 as an experimental home for waterfowl, the Givens Wildlife Interpretive Center serves as the welcome center for the refuge.

Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge is also one of the South’s largest educational centers for waterfowl and wildlife study. The center features a large glass enclosed observatory and is open to self-guided tours with displays, pamphlets and wildlife films. The interpretive theme explains the importance of the area, the waterfowl and the wildlife resources. Click here to download the official brochure.

Wheeler can also be a fun and educational experience for kids of all ages! Click here to find out more. Want to put your knowledge to the test? Take the Flint Creek Trail Tree ID Quiz. Looking for the perfect educational experience? Click here to plan your next field trip.


Change is constant at Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge. Seasons, life cycles, and migrating animals make each visit to the refuge a new experience. There are a multitude of opportunities to interact with wildlife at Wheeler. Click here for a full list of visitor activities. What will your next visit unveil?

Around Morgan County

Helpful Links:

In general, we strongly recommend you do not rely on an electronic navigation device to find your way around the refuge. For more helpful tips and tricks, check out our summer hiking do’s and dont’s! 

Located at Highway 67, Decatur. The Visitor Center is open free to the public daily November through February from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.; and March through October, Tuesday through Saturday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. 256-350-6639.


Nearby Points of Interest

Alabama Jubilee Hot-Air Balloon Classic

Located approximately 1.86 miles from Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge.

Hot-air balloons fill the air over Memorial Day Weekend, flown by pilots from across the U.S.

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Big Bob Gibson BBQ

Located approximately 2.7 miles from Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge.

Five generations of pitmasters & over 90 years of barbecuing, they’ve earned 15 World BBQ Championships (Pork, Brisket, Ribs, Chicken) and 5 Memphis in May World BBQ Grand Championships.

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Biking and Hiking Trails at Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge

Hiking and biking have become increasingly popular on the refuge.

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A Perfect Day in Decatur

A perfect day in Decatur should definitely begin with a hot cup of coffee and end with a walk in the park.

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