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Two Rivers
National Wildlife Refuge

green heron behind branches, with water in background
HC 82, Box 107 (Hagen Road)
Brussels, IL   62013
E-mail: tworivers@fws.gov
Phone Number: 618-883-2524
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
Managers at Two Rivers Refuge control water levels to benefit species such as the green heron.
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Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge

All or portions of the refuge are closed due to flooding. Please contact the refuge before visiting.

The 8,501-acre Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge is one of five refuges in the Mark Twain National Wildlife Refuge Complex. Formerly known as the Brussels District of Mark Twain Refuge, most of Two Rivers Refuge is located near the confluence of the Illinois and Mississippi rivers. The refuge is comprised of five divisions: Apple Creek, Batchtown, Calhoun, Gilbert Lake, and Portage Island.

The refuge is managed for migratory birds, endangered species, and migratory fish. Management techniques mimic the historic flood cycle of the rivers to support native plant and animal communities characteristic of large river ecosystems. The refuge provides an important link in the chain of resting, feeding, and wintering areas for migratory bird species using the Mississippi Flyway, as well as important habitat for many resident wildlife species.

Getting There . . .
The refuge headquarters, including the visitor center, is located at the Calhoun Division, four miles east of Brussels, Illinois. It can be reached in either of the following ways: FROM ILLINOIS: Travel 14 miles west of Alton, Illinois, on the Great River Road (Hwy 100) to the Brussels Ferry. Cross the Illinois River and proceed another 4.5 miles to the refuge entrance. FROM MISSOURI: The refuge is located north of St. Charles County, Missouri. From Highway 370, take the Elm Street exit north 0.5 mile. Turn left onto Fountain Lakes Boulevard and go 0.65 mile to Huster Road. Turn right onto Huster Road and go two miles to Highway B. After turning left onto Highway B, drive two miles and turn right onto Golden Eagle Ferry Road. Drive one mile and use the Golden Eagle Ferry to cross the Mississippi River into Illinois. The Golden Eagle Ferry charges $7.00 per car one-way or $13.00 per car roundtrip. After leaving the ferry, travel two miles on Ferry Road to the intersection with Mississippi River Road, then turn right. This road meanders through rolling hills for 3.4 miles to the intersection with Illinois River Road. Turn right onto Illinois River Road, travel two miles, and turn left onto Hagen Road. Travel one mile on Hagen Road to the refuge entrance.

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These driving directions are provided as a general guide only. No representation is made or warranty given as to their content, road conditions or route usability or expeditiousness. User assumes all risk of use.

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Wildlife and Habitat

The refuge's location along the Mississippi and Illinois rivers provides access to a diverse array of irreplaceable wetland, open water, and floodplain areas that provide important habitat for fish and wildlife.

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Two Rivers Refuge, situated along the Mississippi River corridor, shares much of its history with the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the five states of the Upper Mississippi River System, and, most of all, the Mark Twain National Wildlife Refuge Complex.

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Management Activities
Refuge managers use several techniques to mimic the historic flood pulse of a large river floodplain ecosystem. Water level manipulation is used to create habitat types used by resident and migrating water birds. Forest and grassland restoration, cooperative farming, and controlled burning are used to enhance upland areas. The Batchtown, Gilbert Lake, and Portage Islands Divisions are closed to all public access October 15 through December 31. The Calhoun Division is closed to all public access October 15 through December 31 except for the headquarters, wildlife viewing blind, and the area east of the Illinois River Road. These areas are closed to provide sanctuary for migratory birds. The Apple Creek Division is open year-round.