In the bare treetops along the Mississippi River, bald eagles roost during the winter months, catching fish on the open water.
Once nearly extinct, the American Bald Eagle is now commonly visible along the shores of some large lakes and rivers during the winter. For a closer look, head to a bald eagle-watching event in one of Iowa's waterfront communities.
At the annual Eagle Watch in Clinton, visitors can enjoy outdoor eagle viewing at Lock & Dam 13. As many as 2,500 eagles spend the winter along the upper Mississippi River each year - learn more about these spectacular birds through the wildlife programs and exhibits that accompany this January 5, 2002 event.
On January 5 and 6, the Mississippi Valley Welcome Center in Le Claire hosts three presentations on eagles by the Army Corps of Engineers, and viewing scopes are provided to see the birds.
The unusual combination of a ragtime music festival and bald eagle watch draws visitors to Muscatine each January for Eagles and Ivories Ragtime Weekend. First, head out to Lock & Dam 16 for eagle viewing. Then, warm up indoors at ragtime music concerts and silent movies with piano accompaniment. Other activities at this January 18-21 event include a soup supper and craft show.
Keokuk is the winter home of one of the largest concentrations of bald eagles on the Mississippi. Learn about wildlife and the environment, and see presentations with live eagles and other birds of prey at Bald Eagle Appreciation Days, January 19-20.
In south central Iowa, the large reservoir of Lake Red Rock attracts birds throughout the winter months. On February 23, travel to this area to observe eagles in the wild, and watch live eagle presentations and a slide show about eagles.
Other bald eagle-watching events will be held January 12 in Dubuque, January 13 in Bellevue, and January 19-20 in Guttenberg. For more information on bald eagle watches in Iowa, visit www.traveliowa.com.