The annual Waterfowl Observation Day, hosted by the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge, Friends of the Refuge – Mississippi River Pools 7 & 8 (FOR78) and the Friends of the Upper Mississippi (FUM), will be held Saturday, November 10th at the Brownsville Overlook between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Visitors will be able to view migrating birds that have stopped to rest and feed along their journey to their wintering grounds.
Binoculars, spotting scopes, and bird identification guides will be available for visitors to enjoy. Refuge staff and volunteers, along with members of FOR78 and FUM, will assist with bird identification and answer related questions. Please dress for cold weather!
Refreshments will be available during this event only, with all donations benefiting FUM. Members of FUM and FOR78 will have wildlife-themed items available for purchase.
The Brownsville Overlook is one of the best places along the river to view hundreds of tundra swans; diving and puddle ducks; bald eagles; and other birds. The overlook is located about three miles south of Brownsville, Minn., along Highway 26.
If you aren’t able to make the special event on November 10th, naturalists will be available at Brownsville Overlook on Saturdays and Sundays from November 3rd through November 18th between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., weather permitting.
For more information, contact the La Crosse District Office at (608) 779-2399 or visit the visitor center, located at N5727 County Road Z, Onalaska, Wisc. Visitor center hours are Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. and Saturdays 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. We will be closed on Thanksgiving Day. In December and January, the Visitor Center will be open Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. but will be closed on Saturdays.
The Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge is the most visited refuge in the United States. The refuge extends 261 miles along the Upper Mississippi River from Wabasha, Minn. to Rock Island, Ill., protecting and preserving habitat for migratory birds, fish, and a variety of other wildlife.
In addition to being the most visited refuge in the country, the “Upper Miss” Refuge has the added complexity of a major navigation system, including 11 locks and dams, within its boundary. It is also a world-class fish and wildlife area which harbors 306 species of birds; 119 species of fish; more than 300 active bald eagle nests; thousands of heron and egret nests; spectacular concentrations of canvasback ducks, tundra swans, and white pelicans; and several threatened or endangered species.