The cold winter months of December through March are good times to find and watch bald eagles on the Grant Wood Loop. Since most lakes and rivers freeze over in winter, dams provide areas of open water in which the eagles can fish.
The greatest number of eagles can usually be seen at open-water areas in the mornings as they fly back and forth, searching for their first meal of the day (Dubuque Lock & Dam 11 and Bellevue State Park). Wintering eagles also feed on carrion and later in the day can frequently be seen searching for and feeding on dead deer and other animals in the countryside (Hurstville Interpretive Center). Late in the afternoon, the eagles head to their favorite night roosting areas – places with large trees that provide protection from cold winds and severe weather (Pictured Rocks Park).