Upcoming Programs and Events
Education Programs & Field Trips
Welcome to Oxbow Meadows

Environmental Learning Center

Welcome to Oxbow Meadows

Opened in 1995 as a collaboration among Columbus State University, Columbus Water Works, and the City of Columbus, Oxbow Meadows Environmental Learning Center provides exhibits, natural history displays, nature trails, and also offers formal and informal educational programs about the ecology and natural history of the region.

Inside the center, visitors can view a variety of snakes, turtles, tortoises, fish, alligators, invertebrates, and lots more. Visitors can take a walk down our trails to catch a glimpse of native wildlife, view our wetlands and ponds, or to explore our educational and fun Discovery Trail.

Due to the current public health crisis, we have altered our operations to create a safe environment for our guests and staff. To assure social distancing and proper sanitation measures, will be engaging smaller groups of visitors, on a much more intimate and in-depth level, with timed experiences. This new mode will allow guests to explore Oxbow Meadows more safely. Please read all the information carefully so that you will know what to expect.

  • Please do not visit Oxbow Meadows if you are sick, exhibiting fever, or experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19. Guests exhibiting these symptoms will not be permitted to enter.
  • Wear a mask or proper face covering at all times.
  • Maintain social distancing (6 feet of distance, no handshakes or physical contact) while inside the facility.
  • Signage reminding visitors of proper precautions, including wearing face coverings and maintaining 6-foot social distancing, is posted upon entry and throughout the facility.
  • A maximum number of guests or groups are permitted during each timed rotation so that proper social distancing can be maintained.
  • Common surfaces and touchpoints are disinfected regularly.
  • Hand sanitation stations are posted throughout Oxbow Meadows for guest use.
  • Interior signage is in place on floors throughout the center as a reminder of proper social distancing protocol for patrons who are waiting in line.
  • Restrooms are cleaned and disinfected regularly.
  • Where auditorium seating occurs, non-cohabiting patrons must be seated at least six feet apart.

Oxbow Meadows sanitation and safety protocols are aligned with those of Columbus State University and the University System of Georgia

Field Trips to Oxbow Meadows
The helpful and knowledgeable staff of Oxbow Meadows will provide your students with a unique, hands-on learning experience to enhance curriculum and state standards.
Birthday Parties
Looking for a special kind of party, one that educates and entertains? Book your party with Oxbow Meadows, and we will ensure that your child has a party they'll never forget!

Oxbow Exclusives


Can’t make it to Oxbow in person? Well dive on into our collection of ‘Ed’ventures curated by our education team for all ages!

Adopt A Critter

Trying to gift wrap an alligator can be one dangerous job! Make life easier by becoming an Oxbow Meadows Wildlife Parent today and Adopt a Critter!

Home School

Looking for a unique experience beyond what you can provide from home? Oxbow’s Home School programs offer that and so much more!

Animal Art

Didn’t know a turtle could paint? Welcome to art class with our Oxbow animals. Looking for a unique gift or just a fun way to donate, visit our virtual gallery!

Visitor Information

Hours of Operation:

Hours of Operation:

Trails & Grounds
Monday to Friday | 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Saturday & Sunday | CLOSED

The Center Timed Ticket Required
Friday | 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Saturday to Thursday | CLOSED

Gates will open and close the at same times. Please note that hours are subject to change, please visit our Calendar of Events to view scheduled closings.

Rules and Regulations:

  • Please keep pets leashed at all times while on our trails
  • No dogs, with the exception of service dogs, are allowed in the building
  • Fishing, hunting, and trapping are not permitted on the property
  • Please do not disturb the native plants and wildlife found on our property
  • Please do not feed any wildlife on our property
  • Picnics are allowed in the designated areas
  • No alcoholic beverages, illegal drugs, and/or fireworks are permitted on the property
  • Oxbow Meadows and Columbus State University are smoke free properties; no smoking allowed

Please report ALL accidents. In case of an emergency, please call 911.



Suggested $5 donation for admission.

Oxbow Meadows spends over $60,000 each year on the care, feeding, and expansion of our animal collections. All donations will assist animal care and the continuation and growth of our education programs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I bring wild or injured animals to Oxbow Meadows?

Unfortunately, Oxbow Meadows is not a licensed wildlife rehabilitation center, please do not bring wildlife to Oxbow Meadows.

Where can I take an injured animal?

Please use the following list to find local wildlife rehabbers and their animal specialty.

Wildlife Rehabilitator List (PDF)