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mother nature





Warroad is the perfect spot to see mother nature first hand and for birding enthusiasts to complete their birding checklists.  The Lake of the Woods shoreline is easily scanned from atop the observation tower or the drive up nature viewing area located on the north side of the Warroad Point Park. The Lake of the Woods area is home to almost 300 species of birds, including water species such as loons, Canadian geese, tundra swans, herons, white pelicans, piping plovers, terns and mallards. Just to the west of Warroad is the Roseau Bog, a birding “hotspot” featuring Wilson’s phalarope, sharp-tailed sparrow, gyrfalcon, northern hawk owl, snowy owl and winter finches.

Some of our area’s familiar bird friends include sparrows, robins, orioles, black-backed woodpeckers, vireos, juncos, red wing black birds, chickadees, and hummingbirds. Birds of prey can also be seen in the Warroad area and include the bald eagle, turkey vulture, and great gray and snowy owls.

Warroad is located close to the Pine to Prairie Birding Trail that travels through northern Minnesota and up into Manitoba, Canada.  This trail offers unique bird watching opportunities spanning 300 miles traveling through state parks, wildlife refuges, wetlands and prairies starting at its southern tip in Fergus Falls. Over 270 different species of birds can be viewed along this trail.

For more details on the Pine to Prairie Birding Trail, click here.



The rare and beautiful orchid called the Showy Lady Slipper can be seen in many magnificent colors along a segment of Hwy 11 between Greenbush and Baudette along the Waters of the Dancing Sky Scenic Byway.

Showy Lady Slippers are extremely hard to establish or transplant. It not only takes very unique soil conditions to originate the growing of a Showy Lady Slipper, but it also takes seven years of growth for the plant to mature, before it will bloom. The Minnesota DNR and DOT have been working together for several years to help preserve the settings that allow the particularly rare flowers of Minnesota to grow in a natural state along the grasslands adjacent to the highways. With less than 1 percent of the state’s original prairie land remaining, the majority of the original prairie lands are found between highway and railroad right-of-ways.


The City of Williams, located along the Wildflower Route, claims the title of “Orchid Capital of the Nation.” The immediate area surrounding Williams contains over 20 varieties of orchids, adding up to over 10 million flowers. The Williams Gardeners annually stake approximately 40 different wildflowers and provide detailed maps for enthusiasts looking for the unique flowers.

To increase public awareness of this unique area and its flowers, the Williams Gardeners Club annually hosts a Wildflower Route, this year the date is June 18, 2011 from 1 to 3 p.m. at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Williams. The speaker is Sue Olin, former Zippel Bay State Park manager. Please call Beverley Carlson at 218-783-6701 or Sandy Johnson 218-783-2805 with questions.