Choctaw National Wildlife Refuge is a little off the beaten path but well worth the trip. Water defines this 4,218 – acre refuge, covering roughly one-half of the refuge in creeks, sloughs, lakes, and backwaters of the Tombigbee River, which borders the refuge for 6.5 miles. These waters, and the hardwood bottomlands and open fields around them, draw a wealth of wildlife species, from American alligators to Anhingas. Refuge managers provide habitat and protection for threatened and endangered species, like the Wood Stork and Bald Eagle, and promote wildlife diversity, wildlife-dependent recreation, habitat for wintering waterfowl, and Wood Duck production and banding. Managers have placed more than 400 artificial Wood Duck nesting boxes in the refuge’s wetlands to supplement natural cavities, and some 2500 Wood Ducks hatch in these boxes each year. Though much of the refuge is accessible only by boat, roads traverse the north end, providing access to a variety of habitats. Visitors can hike, boat, view and photograph wildlife, fish, and hunt on the refuge. An interpretive kiosk provides information about the park’s natural history, and the cypress swamp overlook offers an excellent spot for wildlife viewing. The Choctaw National Wildlife Refuge is included in the Alabama’s Ten Best Bird-Watching Spots that’s in the Alabama Bird Watching Guide published by Bill Thompson, III & the staff of Bird Watcher’s Digest.
The Choctaw National Wildlife Refuge is located east of Womack Hill, AL in the southern part of Choctaw County. GPS coordinates of the entrance if the Choctaw NWR are N31.844833,W88.165778.
Source: Alabama Black Belt Nature and Heritage Trail (a publication of the Alabama Bureau of Tourism & Travel).
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