The Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge invites families to Critter Day in the new visitor center on Saturday, December 15. Participants will be able to go on a guided nature walk at 10:00 a.m., make peanut butter bird feeders at 12:00 p.m., and work on a scavenger hunt throughout the day. Activities are suitable for children age five and older.“Critter Day offers a great opportunity to break away from holiday preparations and learn about local wildlife critters,” says Ranger Daniel Peterson. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Participants should dress for the weather. Walking distance will be less than a half mile and on flat surfaces.For more information, contact the La Crosse District Office at (608) 779-2399 or visit the new visitor center, located at N5727 County Road Z, Onalaska, WI. Visitor center hours are Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. and one Saturday each month for special programs from 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. We will be closed on all Federal holidays. 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.
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A year round resident on the refuge however numbers soar during the winter. Look below locks and dams where the river is not frozen. Aerial displays and pair bonding are best viewed from January through March. In winter, over 1,000 bald eagles grab fish,ducks or coots in the open water.