The Refuge is known for its waterfowl hunting, fishing and wildlife observation. Refuge hunting and fishing seasons generally follow state seasons and regulations. To conserve this special place, and safeguard the experience for all we ask you to observe the Public Use Regulations and Hunting Regulations.
Areas throughout the Refuge are designated as closed or restricted use areas, usually fall to spring, to protect migrating waterfowl or for public safety. These areas are marked with orange-topped “special regulation” signs and list the restrictions and effective dates or seasons.
Public Use RegulationsHunting Regulations
Signs Seen in the Field
Youth and Hunters with Disabilities Deer Hunt at Lost Mound Unit, Savanna, Illinois
Potter's Marsh Waterfowl Hunt Management Zone - Pool 13, Thomson, Illinois - updated June 2013
Information and Permit
Refer to State Fishing Regulations in addition to the above Refuge Specific Regulations:
Minnesota Fishing Regulations
Wisconsin Fishing Regulations
Iowa Fishing Regulations
Illinois Fishing Regulations
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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.