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Upper Minnesota River IBA

This IBA provides valuable habitat for more than 200 species of birds in the midst of the most intensely farmed areas in the U.S. This IBA is a natural corridor for migrating birds such as waterfowl, shorebirds, raptors and passerine species including warbler, vireos, thrushes, flycatchers and sparrows.

The Minnesota River Valley floodplain experiences intermittent major flooding that attracts numerous species of ducks, such as Mallards, Blue-winged teal, Lesser scaup, Northern shovelers, Canvasbacks, Canada geese and Tundra swans. An excess of 50,000 waterfowl can be found during years of major spring flooding.

American white pelicans use the Valley as a migration resting and feeding area and a large number of non-breeders can be found during the summer. Great blue heron colonies are found at LeSeuer Sewage Ponds, and Judson. Henslow's sparrows have been recorded in various location within this IBA and the Louisiana waterthrust is intermittent at Minneopa State Park.

This IBA consists of the Minnesota River Valley extending from the City of LeSueur in the northeast to Lac Qui Parle Lake on the west and contains numerous WMA's and SNA's plus Fort Ridgely, Flandrau, Minneopa,Upper Sioux Agency State Parks, and several county parks.