Chautauqua National Wildlife Refuge is situated in the middle of the Mississippi Flyway along the Illinois River near Havana, Illinois. It is an important link in the chain of resting and feeding areas for waterfowl and other migratory birds in the flyway. The refuge has been designated a Globally Important Bird Area and a Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network site.
Waterfowl and shorebirds seek the food resources and sanctuary found on the 6,200-acre refuge. Bald eagles nest on the refuge can be found on the area in late fall through spring.
Chautauqua Refuge is the headquarters of the Illinois River National Wildlife and Fish Refuges Complex, which includes the Cameron/Billsbach Unit near Henry, Emiquon Refuge across the river from Havana, and the Meredosia Refuge.