US Army Corps of Engineers
Rock Island District Website


Harlow Island Habitat Rehabilitation and Enhancement Project

St. Louis District

Upper Mississippi River, Miles 140.5-144, Jefferson County, Missouri, Congressional District: MO - 8


  • US Fish and Wildlife Service 


The Harlow Island tract is former cropland protected by a private levee that was breached during he 1993 flood. The Mississippi River is allowed onto the site during high flood events through existing levee breaches. Early successional and non-native species have taken over the former cropland. The island resources include river front forest, a small remnant side channel, and a mile-long slough.

Harlow Island's primary habitat problems include: loss of historic island and side channel habitats, existing forest habitat with low diversity, reduced sheet flow across the site due to old agricultural levees, invasive plant species, and accretion of the islands to the mainland.

The proposed Project seeks to restore side channel/island habitat and improve quality of the existing side channels by enhancing depth diversity and connectivity which will benefit a wide variety of riverine fish and wildlife.  The proposed Project also seeks to enlarge contiguous blocks of floodplain forest and improve the diversity of wetland habitats.

Quick Facts

  • Approximate Acres: 1,225
  • Congressional District: MO - 8
  • State(s) Covered: MO
  • Land Ownership: Federal
  • Management Agency: USFWS
  • Management Authority: Refuge

Potential features of the proposed Project may include, but not limited to:

  • Side channel excavation and reconnection
  • Sediment deflection berm
  • Degradation of existing agricultural levees
  • Reforestation
  • Milestones

    • Revised Fact Sheet approved: 2010
    • Feasibility study underway