Every year tens of thousands of people flock to the Midwest to view bald eagles gathering to feed along major waterways. They have come to catch a glimpse, perhaps for the first time, of our national symbol.
Thousands of bald eagles over-winter along the Mississippi and Illinois rivers near the lock and dams because the turbulence created below the dams provides open water and a smorgasbord of stunned fish to feast on. In addition, the wooded bluffs that overlook the rivers are excellent habitat for roosting and nesting.
Bald eagle watches take place in many areas across the Midwest throughout January and February, but eagles can be seen from mid December through early March, depending on the weather conditions. As warm weather arrives, many eagles begin their journey back north to Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Canada to prepare for the nesting season.