Riverlands Migratory Bird Sanctuary
Riverlands Migratory Bird Sanctuary is comprised of 3,700 acres of diverse conservation land and 1,200 acres of wetland and bottomland prairie restoration. Maintained by the United States Army Corps of Engineers, Riverlands is located across from the City of Alton over the Clark Bridge in the area known as West Alton. The sanctuary is a fantastic example of maintained wild river land, focusing on stewardship, recreation, and education.
The area boasts hiking and biking trails, fishing access, and is home to a diverse population of both regional and travelling wildlife. Waterfowl like pelicans, swans, geese, and ducks, as well as shorebirds like herons, egrets, and ring-necked gulls can be seen at Riverlands. The American Bald Eagle can be found on the preserve in the colder months, particularly in January and February- with raptors like red-tailed hawks, ospreys, and owls to be found throughout most of the year. See wild turkey, white-tailed deer, cottontail rabbits, and many kinds of frogs, toads, turtles, and other species.
Riverlands Sanctuary is near the Melvin Price Lock and Dam and offers access to the Edward 'Ted' and Pat Jones Confluence Point where the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers meet, as well as the Lincoln Shields Recreation Area and the Audubon Center. Visitors can also kayak, canoe, and paddleboard at Riverlands and can partake in educational programs nearly every weekend at the Audubon Center!
*All visitors should wear a life jacket if planning to be near the water and pay attention to signage in the area- some areas are off limits to guests and flooding, animal conservation, and Riverlands projects can change the areas affected. Check the web and social media to see closures and openings!
*The Audubon Bird Sanctuary is open 8 AM - 4 PM Tuesday - Sunday.
*Hiking Trails are open April 15 - October 15
*Lincoln-Shields Recreation Area closes at dusk