The Karl E. Mundt National Wildlife Refuge protects one of the most critical bald eagle winter roosts in the country and provides important habitat for 100-300 bald eagles. To protect the eagles from disturbance, the Refuge itself is closed to visitors. However, a kiosk below the Fort Randall Dam on the west bank of the Missouri River provides information about and excellent viewing of the eagles in their natural territory.
Location and Contact Information
Located along the Missouri River below Fort Randall Dam, Karl E. Mundt National Wildlife Refuge is managed to provide habitat for bald eagles. This Refuge’s story began in 1967, when a biologist counted 283 bald eagles wintering in this area. At the time, the bald eagle populations outside of Alaska were declining rapidly. In 1974, the National Wildlife Federation donated these lands to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the first for bald eagles was established. The new Refuge was named after the late Karl E. Mundt, a South Dakota Senator who was a strong supporter of the Endangered Species Act of 1966. Today, the Refuge protects one of the last remnants of natural habitat along the Missouri River, and it benefits more than bald eagles.
What We Do
Wildlife conservation is at the heart of the National Wildlife Refuge System. The refuge provides important habitat for neotropical migratory birds that requireforest to migrate and nest.