Expandere WMA


Area and County

    Cottonwood County
    Southwest Minnesota

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North Unit: 38.5 acres

South Unit: 853.3 acres


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South Unit North Section

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South Unit North Section


South Unit South Section

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390th St.
N43 55.222, W95 20.423

There is no parking lot or designated parking area for this WMA. Directions on the DNR Website lead to the coordinates on 390th St. shown above.

DNR Management Road
N43 55.222, W95 21.713

There is a 100-yard “DNR Management Road open to Public Foot Travel” on 390th St. just west of 360th Ave.

Hiking Trails

No maintained trails


Deer, small game, pheasant, and waterfowl. See Hunting and Trapping Regulations (MN DNR) for details.

Ecological Classification Province  

Prairie Parkland Province

Ecological Classification

North Central Glaciated Plains


Coteau Moraines

Land Type Association(s)

Slayton Moraine

Native Plant Communities1

Mesic Prairie (Southern)

Prairie Mixed Cattail Marsh

Seepage Meadow/Carr

Southern Basin Wet Meadow/Carr

Wet Prairie (Southern)

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Minnesota DNR


Expandere Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is an 896-acre reserve in intensively farmed southwestern Minnesota. It has what may be the state’s largest population of small white lady’s slipper (Cypripedium candidum), a species of special concern. A survey in 2005 found more than 6,000 plants here. Another survey in 2012 counted 9,373 plants. Powesheik skipperling (Oarisma powesheik), a small, federally endangered butterfly, has also been recorded on this site. A survey in 1993 and 1994 found 5 individuals on this site. However, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the skipperling “may have been extirpated from the Dakotas, Minnesota and Iowa within the last 10 years…”. Surveys in 2014 found the skipperling only at a few sites, and only in a single county in Michigan.

Expandere WMA has two separated units which lie on an area of glacial till, an unsorted aggregate of clay, sand, gravel, and boulders. It is mostly wet prairie. It is bisected by an unnamed stream and has large areas of cattail marsh to the east. There is also an elevated ridge of moderately moist (mesic) prairie to the south. The low areas are subject to flooding in the spring with snow melt and throughout the year after heavy rains, but experience draw-downs in the summer.









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Insects and Arachnids

One insect species with conservation status in Minnesota has been seen here:



Powesheik skipperling (Oarisma powesheik)


A survey in 1993 and 1994 found 5 Powesheik skipperling on this site.


One plant species with conservation status in Minnesota is found here:


Special concern

small white lady’s slipper (Cypripedium candidum)


This site has what may be the state’s largest population of small white lady’s slipper in the state. A survey in 2012 counted 9,373 plants.


Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas Plant List


Plants frequently found in:

Mesic Prairie (Southern) UPs23a

Prairie Mixed Cattail Marsh MRp83

Seepage Meadow/Carr WMs83a

Southern Basin Wet Meadow/Carr WMs92

Wet Prairie (Southern) WPs54b




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