Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

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Area and County

Sherburne County





30,665 acres


Sand Dunes State Forest Trail Map

Refuge Map and Information Brochure


Information Kiosk, County Road 9
N45 30.108, W93 39.998

Hiking Trails

Mahnomen Trail: 2.86 miles
Blue Hill Trail: 5.05 miles
Prairie Trail: 0.42 mile
Woodland Trail: 0.5 mile

7.3 mile Prairie’s Edge Wildlife Drive


Deer by shotgun and archery, migratory birds, small game, and spring turkey.

See Sherburne Hunting Regulations and Map (USFWS) for details.

Ecological Classification


Eastern Broadleaf Forest Province
Laurentian Mixed Forest Province

Ecological Classification


Minnesota & NE Iowa Morainal
Western Superior Uplands


Anoka Sand Plain
Mille Lacs Uplands

Land Type Association(s)

Anoka Lake Plain

Milaca Till Plain

Native Plant Communities1

Alder - (Maple - Loosestrife) Swamp

Black Ash - Yellow Birch - Red Maple - Basswood Swamp (Eastcentral)

Central Dry-Mesic Oak-Aspen Forest

Dry Barrens Oak Savanna (Southern)

Dry Barrens Oak Savanna (Southern): Oak Subtype

Dry Barrens Prairie (Southern)

Dry Sand - Gravel Oak Savanna (Southern)

Northern Mixed Cattail Marsh

Northwestern Wet-Mesic Aspen Woodland

Other Water Body

Prairie Rich Fen

Sedge Meadow

Southern Dry Savanna

Southern Dry-Mesic Oak (Maple) Woodland

Southern Wet Prairie

Tamarack Swamp (Southern)

Wet Prairie (Southern)

Willow - Dogwood Shrub Swamp



U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service







Driving Directions

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Visitor Photos

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Wayne Rasmussen

Sandhill Crane in wetlands of Sherburne Co

  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge    
  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge is located in the east central region of the state, approximately 50 miles northwest of the Minneapolis/St. Paul metropolitan area and 30 miles southeast of St. Cloud. The refuge protects 30,700 acres of habitat for migratory birds and other wildlife.


  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge   Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge
  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge    





  Sherburne NWR - April 2015
Craig A. Mullenbach
  Sherburne NWR - April 2015  

Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge Minnesota.

  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge May 2014
Craig A. Mullenbach
  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge May 2014  
  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge
Craig A. Mullenbach
  Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge  

Sherburne Environmental Education
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Midwest Region


Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge doesn't let the weather or lack of Visitor Services facilities stop them from getting kids outside to enjoy nature.

Refuge staff and Friends continue to provide environmental education programs to thousands of school children, teachers, Scouts and other groups throughout the year. They provide a "Classroom Without Walls" to learners of all ages and abilities.

Sherburne Refuge volunteer environmental educator Jess Johnson led the activity, with the assistance of another volunteer educator, Renee Brandt. Staffers Beth Watson and Betsy Beneke were also on hand.





Visitor Videos

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Other Videos

  Aerial Video - Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge - St. Francis River - DJI Phantom

Published on Dec 31, 2013
Zimmerman, MN - 12/28/13

  4/17/2009 Prescribed Burn Grass Fire Footage, Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge

Uploaded on Oct 9, 2010

4/17/2009 Prescribed Burn Grass Fire Footage. With fire dangers in the area under control due to higher humidity, the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge decided that it was a good window of opportunity for a prescribed burn to try and eliminate a potentially explosive situation.

Catalog #: 04172009A
Total Run Time 07;21;26
Screen Format: 16:9

Video Format: High Definition
License Type: Rights Managed

To license this footage, contact





Visitor Observations

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Wayne Rasmussen


Sandhill Crane (Grus canadensis tabida)

Sandhill Crane Observations



Thousands of Sandhill Cranes stage in and around this refuge in October. Numbers usually peak the third week in October.

Sandhill Crane Viewing Map and Tips


Seventeen bird species with conservation status in Minnesota and one tracked species have been seen here:



Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus)

Loggerhead Shrike (Lanius ludovicianus)



Wilson’s Phalarope (Phalaropus tricolor)


Special concern

American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)

Boreal Owl (Aegolius funereus)

Cerulean Warbler (Setophaga cerulea)

Forster’s Tern (Sterna forsteri)

Franklin’s Gull (Leucophaeus pipixcan)

Henslow’s Sparrow (Ammodramus henslowii)

Hooded Warbler (Setophaga citrina)

Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus)

Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis)

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus)

Purple Martin (Progne subis)

Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus)

Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus)

Trumpeter Swan (Cygnus buccinator)



Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)


USFWS Bird Checklist


American Black Duck (Anas rubripes)

American Coot (Fulica americana)

American Goldfinch (Carduelis tristis)

American Robin (Turdus migratorius)

American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos)

Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)

Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater)

Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)

Common Loon (Gavia immer)

Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus)

Eastern Kingbird (Tyrannus tyrannus)

Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla)

Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)

Great Egret (Ardea alba)

Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)

Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)

Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)

Sandhill Crane (Grus canadensis)

Tundra Swan (Cygnus columbianus)

Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)

Brown-headed Cowbird

Canada Goose

Double-crested Cormorant

Great Egret

Sandhill Crane



Fourteen plant species with conservation status in Minnesota and one species on the watch list are found here:



tall nutrush (Scleria triglomerata)



beaked skeletonweed (Shinnersoseris rostrata)

lance-leaved violet (Viola lanceolata ssp. lanceolata)

pale green orchid (Platanthera flava var. herbiola)

seaside three-awn (Aristida tuberculosa)

swamp blackberry (Rubus semisetosus)

woolly beachheather (Hudsonia tomentosa)


Special concern

Canada frostweed (Helianthemum canadense)

Canada toadflax (Nuttallanthus canadensis)

deer sedge (Carex hallii)

Kinnickinnick dewberry (Rubus multifer)

least moonwort (Botrychium simplex)

small-leaved pussytoes (Antennaria parvifolia)

white wild indigo (Baptisia lactea var. lactea)


Watch list

long-bearded hawkweed (Hieracium longipilum)


Minnesota Biodiversity Atlas Plant List


Plants frequently found in:

Alder - (Maple - Loosestrife) Swamp FPn73a

Black Ash - Yellow Birch - Red Maple - Basswood Swamp (Eastcentral) WFn55b

Central Dry-Mesic Oak-Aspen Forest MHc26

Dry Barrens Oak Savanna (Southern) UPs14a2

Dry Barrens Oak Savanna (Southern): Oak Subtype UPs14a2

Dry Barrens Prairie (Southern) UPs13a

Dry Sand - Gravel Oak Savanna (Southern) UPs14ab

Northern Mixed Cattail Marsh MRn83

Northwestern Wet-Mesic Aspen Woodland FDw44

Prairie Rich Fen OPp91

Sedge Meadow WMn82b

Southern Dry Savanna UPs14

Southern Dry-Mesic Oak (Maple) Woodland FDs37

Southern Wet Prairie WPs54

Tamarack Swamp (Southern) FPs63a

Wet Prairie (Southern) WPs54b

Willow - Dogwood Shrub Swamp WMn82a


round-headed bush clover


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



Blanding’s turtle (Emydoidea blandingii)




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