Advanced Search Module

Close Search

Wilson Dam Visitor Center

Wilson Dam and Visitor Center (Site #6, Northwest Loop) is where the Tennessee Vally Authority’s hydroelectric dam impounds the 15,500-acre Wilson Reservoir. This was the first dam constructed on the Tennessee River in Alabama. Construction began on the dam in 1918 and was completed in 1924. The dam was acquired by the TVA in 1933. Together with Pickwick and Wheeler reservoirs, this dam made the treacherous Muscle Shoals navigable for river trade and transport. As with the other dams in northern Alabama, this site is excellent for gulls, as thousands of Ring-billed, Herring, and Bonaparte’s gulls are found regularly. Birders should study these gulls carefully and look for a surprise or two, such as a Laughing or Greater Black-backed gull, or even a Black-legged Kittiwake. In late summer, scan the wooded islands for Black-crowned Night and Yellow-crowned Night herons among the more common Great Blue Herons and Great Egrets.

Directions: TVA’s Wilson Dam crosses the Tennessee River between Florence and Muscle Shoals, AL. The Wilson Dam Visitor Center is on the Muscle Shoals side of the river at the dam’s southern end. The kiosk at the Visitor Center will orient and guide visitors to nearby trails and sites available for birding.

GPS: N 34.7934, W 87.6262

Fee: Free

Amenities: Hiking, Parking, Visitor Center

Contact Info:
Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA)
TVA, SB 1H, PO Box 1010
Muscle Shoals, AL 35662-1010
(256) 386-2543

 http://www.tva.gov/sites/wilson.htm

Nearby Sites

Natchez Trace Parkway – Colbert Ferry

Colbert Ferry  (Site #12, Northwest Loop) provides access to a number of wooded habitats, including a beaver pond with lots of standing dead timber. Check this area for Red-headed and other woodpeckers. Closer to the shore, search the trees for White-breasted Nuthatches year-round and Orchard Orioles and Eastern Kingbirds in the summer. The park also […]

More Info

Town Creek Marsh

Town Creek Marsh (Site #4, Northwest Loop) is a small marsh in the bend of Fosters Mill Road overlooking Town Creek. It is an excellent place to see rails feeding on the mudflats during appropriate times of year. The marsh also supports a variety of wading birds and waterfowl, especially during the winter months. From […]

More Info

Freedom Hills Wildlife Management Area Walking Trail

The walking trail at Freedom Hills Wildlife Management Area (Site #13, Northwest Loop) is one of numerous gravel and dirt hunter access roads on the 34,500 acre WMA, which leads visitors into a variety of productive habitats ranging from old fields to mature hardwood forest. These habitats are interspersed with wildlife openings planted for deer, […]

More Info