Eagles In Alton

Just 25 miles north of St. Louis on the Mississippi River, Alton, Ill., has become a winter home to the eagles. Before dawn breaks on the Meeting of the Great Rivers National Scenic Byway, the eagles begin to soar over the Mississippi River. From late December through mid-February, all around Alton is all about eagles with guided eagle watching tours and events offered every weekend and during the week.

For more information on eagle watching, please call the Alton Visitor Center at (800) 258-6645. Download a FREE Eagle Watcher's Guide or click here to request a visitor guide.

In order to celebrate the return of the wintering American Bald Eagle, the Great Rivers & Routes Tourism Bureau will be kicking off the season with the Alton Audubon Eagle Ice Festival on Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Alton Visitor Center in Downtown Alton and at the Audubon Center at Riverlands. The festival will celebrate the start of the eagle watching season with eagle activities, an eagle meet and greet and more.
Find about the latest eagle counts here. You can also become an "Official Meeting of the Great Rivers Eagle Watcher" and earn a free T-shirt.

Don't forget to download our Eagle Watcher's App to have the latest eagle information all on your smartphone or tablet!

Facts & Information On American Bald Eagles

  • Eat fish, carrion, smaller birds and rodents
  • Soars through the sky rather than flap wings
  • There is a large amount of bald eagles in Alaska and Canada
  • Use their talons to fish or steal the kills from other animals
  • Live near coasts and lakes where there is a large amount of fish
  • Can live up to 28 years
  • Both female and male bald eagles have a blackish-brown body, white head, neck and tail, yellow feet, legs and beak and pale yellow eyes
  • Bald eagles weigh anywhere from 6.5 pounds to 14 pounds
  • Their body is usually 34 inches to 45 inches long. This is similar to a 6 foot man.