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In the southwest corner of Manitoba you’ll have the opportunity to hear songs from some of the rarest of the grassland birds and see many threatened species. The Manitoba Grasslands Birding Trail features a variety of wildlife habitats. Tall and mixed-grass prairies are embedded with seasonal wetlands, trees and shrubs along streams, lush valleys and dry ridges – home for an extraordinary orchestra of grassland birds. Along this driving trail you can get out of your vehicle at various stops to explore these habitats. The Manitoba Grasslands Birding Trail is an opportunity to experience remnants of the once great grasslands. It is a photographer’s paradise – rare birds and wildlife, grassland flowers and vistas, and huge prairie skies. En route, abandoned buildings bear silent witness to the dustbowl days of the Dirty Thirties that gave rise to the name Poverty Plains.
Birds to See:
Sharp-tailed Grouse, Loggerhead Shrike, Baird’s Sparrow, Grasshopper Sparrow, Sprague’s Pipit, Chestnut-collared Longspur, Bobolink, Say’s Phoebe, Orchard Oriole, Brown Thrasher, Swainson’s Hawk, Ferruginous Hawk, Willow Flycathcer, Alder Flycatcher and Black-billed Cuckoo.
Burrowing Owl, Lark Bunting, Dickcissel and Ring-necked Pheasant.
The Gerald W. Malaher Wildlife Management Area (GPS N49 degrees 2691 W101 degrees 02998) is the best place to start your exploration of the Manitoba Grasslands Birding Trail inside the Poverty Plains. It is just west of Melita. Take PR445 west from Melita to Road 158W and turn north/right. The parking lot is the first driveway on the east/right side of the road. Here you will find an information kiosk for the birding trail and the birding sign for the Gerald W. Malaher WMA “Dust to Diversity Trail”. Interpretive signs describe the site, wildlife and Gerald Malaher’s experiment in creating wildlife habitat.
N49º 2691’ W101º 02998’
Melita-Pierson and Area Tourism