Eagle viewing was excellent at 44th annual Eagle Days Dec. 2-3 at Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge

News from the region
Published Date

Mound City, Mo. – Despite low water levels due to drought, some large pools with water held waterfowl that attracted bald eagles and made wildlife plentiful for the 44th annual Eagle Days at the Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff tallied 2,723 visitors to the event held Dec. 2 and Dec. 3. The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) co-hosted the event along with Loess Bluffs staff, refuge volunteers, and volunteers from the Loess Hills and Osage Trails chapters of the Missouri Master Naturalists, and the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska.

“Everything went very well, a really successful event,” said William Kutosky, refuge manager. “We had lots of kids and lots of families here, that stood out the most.”

Visitors found exhibits and live eagle presentations by the World Bird Sanctuary at the headquarters area. Then most visitors took the driving tour through the refuge to see wild eagles and waterfowl using the wetlands. Visitors also stopped at interpretative stations along with driving tour, such as areas with spotting scopes and the waterfowl exhibit presented by MDC conservation agents.

Driving tour visitors saw eagles perched in trees near the road, or flying over wetlands, and perched on muskrat mounds amid a variety of waterfowl. Ducks paddled alongside Canada geese and thousands of snow geese. More than 1,000 trumpeter swans have fed and rested at the refuge in recent weeks.

Winter is a good time for watching eagles and waterfowl at wetland areas, including MDC conservation areas with managed wetlands. For more eagle watching opportunities this winter, visit http://short.mdc.mo.gov/Zt6.