Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) consists of 37,000 acres of Federal land that represents a diverse biological community.

The Refuge also supports the largest concentration of Sandhill Cranes in the state and is the winter home for an increasing number of the endangered Whooping Crane.

The cranes (Sandhills and Whooping) can be easily viewed from the comfort of the Wildlife Observation Building which is a short walk from the Visitor Center.


1) Wildlife Live Cam Project

WWRA will be providing funds for the installation of a live cam inside one of the Wood Duck nesting boxes at the Visitor Center.

The camera will be mounted in the box and powered by a solar panel. The image will be transmitted to the Visitor Center where it will be shown on a flat panel television.

If this is successful, the project may be expanded to other nesting boxes in and around 
the Visitor Center and Observation Building.

The initial project should be up and running by fall.

2) The Invasive plant species project

Invasive plant species are here, both on the refuge and in the Alabama countryside. Your Wheeler Refuge Wildlife Association is responding to the challenge! On behalf of the association, board members April Waltz and Don Collier applied for a public education grant from ALIPC (the Alabama Invasive Plant Council) last spring. They received $1000 to promote education on invasive plant species at the Wheeler Refuge Visitor Center.

The grant will provide funds to publish a brochure with information on ten to twelve invasive species with pictures, history, ecology and management techniques used for control.

We are also supplying ongoing information in our quartly newsletters.The November 2009 issue focused on three invasive species: kudzu, Cherokee rose, and Chinese privet. The Janruary newsletter introduced three additional invasive species: bamboo, English ivy and nandina.


You are invited to become a member of the Wheeler Wildife Refuge Association. Members are our most important resource and are critical to the continuing success of our organization.  Membership dues make it possible for the Wheeler Wildlife Association to continue supporting the projects and educational programs at Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge.

Our 100+ members participate in a variety of ways from financial support through donations or membership dues to actively volunteering. Every member is important in helping our organization continue to grow.

Benefits of membership include:

  • Subscription to our quarterly newsletter
  • 10% discount on purchases at the Bookstore & Gift Shop
  • Keep in touch with national and local issues regarding refuges
  • Voting privileges at the annual meeting
  • Keep informed on current wildlife and habitat information in Northern Alabama
  • Invitations to special member–only events such as Field Trips
  • And most important of all…the knowledge that your contribution is helping to maintain this unique natural resource called Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge for present and future generations of visitors.

Membership contributions will:

  • Finance various education and conservation activities
  • Improve and create sites for the observation of birds and other wildlife
  • Enhance public awareness along the Tennessee River
  • Support the restoration and preservation of wetlands and associated areas

Won’t you become a Friend of Wheeler Refuge? Just print out and complete the attached MEMBERSHIP FORM and mail it with your check to the Wheeler Wildlife Association.