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Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge

Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge
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General Information

Description - The system of grasslands, cienegas, riparian streams and desert mountains found at Buenos Aires NWR provide habitat and travel corridors for a wide variety of wildlife that includes over 300 species of birds and southwestern mammals that include deer, pronghorn, javelina, coati, ringtail cat, mountain lion, badger and occasional jaguar. The refuge is an excellent birding destination with many of the border Arizona specialty birds like gray hawk, buff-collared nightjar, thick-billed kingbird, and Strickland's woodpecker.

The refuge is open to public use 24 hours a day. Headquarters Visitor Center: 7:30 am to 4:00 pm seven days a week. (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day). Headquarters business office: 7:30 am to 4:00 pm Monday through Friday. Visitor center is closed weekends June 1–August 15.

Attractions -

Endangered species include masked bobwhite, pima pineapple cactus, kearney bluestar, jaguar, and peregrine falcon. The refuge also has the westernmost population of Chiricahua leopard frog and one of two U.S. populations of Underwood's mastiff bat.

Recreation - Recreational activities include wildlife viewing, camping, hiking, horseback riding and hunting.

Climate - You can expect mild winters with warm days (60° to 70°) and cool nights (around 40°). Summers can be extremely hot with daytime temperatures of 100° to 115° and evening lows in the 80s.

Location - From Tucson, go west on Ajo Way (Highway 86) to Three Points. Refuge headquarters are located 38 miles south of Three Points off highway 286. Information and trails are located near Arivaca and can be reached by taking I-19 south from Tucson to the Amado/Arivaca exits. Exit west, turn right at the T, and then left at the Cow Palace onto Arivaca Road. Proceed west for 20 miles to Arivaca. Trails are located both east and west of town.

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: Steve Turner (Arivaca, AZ)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: My trip was 09/17/09 I saw one doe antelope and so many birds. Best thing to do is bring lunch and plan on the day viewing. The best way in is from I-19 People get confused as to landmarks so here is the best I can do. Take I-19 to Arivaca Rd exit if your coming from Tucson...at the bottom of the ramp exit turn right. Go to stop sign (approx 75 yards turn right. You will see the Long Horn Restaurant on your right and cow palace on the left. Turn left at the Cow Palace. Arivaca is 23 miles up the hill you are on. If you need food or supplies Arivaca is your last place to gas up and bring food. There is a Buenos Aires walk in Arivaca and that is the best place for birds, their is also the Head Quarters which in my opinion is best for Antelope, coyote's, birds of prey and Javalina. If you started your day early you will be in Arivaca 6-9am. After your walk around the Cieniga grap your lunch and head out west thru town stay to the right at the old Tire shop. This road takes you approx 12+ miles stay on this road until you get to the T in the road. Turn left (south) toward Mexico, stay on this road a just a few miles and you will see the Main Head Quarters for the Buenos Aires Refuge on your left. Go up and see the Ranch House and note the signs on the way in. You must drive Pronghorn drive, it is a one way road and it is a desert dirt road but very drivable. Dont let the signs scare you off. This road is where I take all my pictures of Pronghorn Antelope. I may regret this but if you have any questions I live in Arivaca and will answer any driving or idea questions you have. My name is Steve 520-241-1154 I love wildlife and would be glad to help. Good Luck viewing.

More Information

Contact Information:
Buenos Aires NWR, P.O. Box 109 , Sasabe, AZ, 85633, Phone: 520-823-4251
, r2rw_bar@fws.gov

Additional Information:
Arizona National Wildlife Refuges - Arizona's Wildlife Refuges protect critical wildlife habitat in the state and provide for some outdoor recreation opportunities. They offer opportunities for bird-watching, viewing numerous other types of wildlife, fishing, hiking and environmental interpretation, and simply enjoying nature.
Southern Arizona - Southern Arizona is a region of desert lowlands, high desert and rugged, forest-topped mountains. The city of Tucson lies at the heart of this region

Buenos Aires NWR - Official agency website


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