Wildlife Viewing Areas
 Search the U.S.
Find an AnimalFind a Viewing AreaPlan a TripAboutContact

 

Purchase the Minnesota wildlife viewing guide
Explore Minnesota

Minnesota DNR

Minnesota State Parks

Lac Qui Parle WMA & State Park
Lac qui Parle is a French translation of the name given to the lake by the Dakota Indians who called it the "lake that speaks."<br><br>Lac Qui Parle and associated Marsh Lake lie in the Upper Minnesota River Valley. Large tracts of native prairie interspersed with numerous wetland basins surround...
more info

Thielke Lake WMA
Description: Thielke Lakes lies within a complex of shallow lakes and wetlands where east meets west near Minnesota’s border with South Dakota. This landscape is a hotspot for migratory birds and is part of the Lac Qui Parle-Big Stone Important Bird Area.

Wildlife to Watch: Thielke Lake is well known as home to a nesting colony of western grebes. Each spring, western grebes perform a mating display in which pairs rise up and run across the water. With neck curved and wings partially flared, the pair, in almost perfect unison, runs across the surface of the water for I00 yards or more.

After hatching, chicks often ride their parents’ backs to rest, stay warm and be protected from predatory fish. You can hear grebes' sharp, screechy whistle as they announce to begging chicks that a captured a meal of fish.

Spring is one of the best times to visit Thielke Lake and the surrounding wetland areas of Big Stone County, where you may also observe a variety of other birds including Clark’s grebes, waterfowl, great blue herons, great egrets, American white pelicans, black terns, Forster's terns and ring-billed gulls.

Early August is a great time to scope migrating shorebirds flocking to the shores of Thielke Lake and nearby wetlands.

Special Tips: When visiting Thielke Lake, be sure to seek out nearby WMAs and federal Waterfowl Production Areas (WPAs) to see additional wetland and grassland birds.

Ownership: MN DNR 
Size: 357 acres 
Closest Town: Clinton

Facilities:
HuntingRV Pullout

Best Seasons for Wildlife Viewing:
SpringSummerFall

Clark's Grebe - photo by USFWS
Map
Please use Map Link below

Driving Directions:
Thielke Lake can be observed from a gravel road bordering the lake’s south shore. From Ortonville, take Highway 75 north for 6 miles. Turn east on gravel road 62 for 1.25 miles. The gravel road curves around the south shore of the lake. OR from Clinton, go 4 1/2 miles south on US 75. Turn east on Road 62.

Map Link

 
Thielke Lake WMA : Wildlife Viewing Area