Willow River State Wildlife Area & Three Lakes National Waterfowl Production Area

© Bucklew Photography
© Bucklew Photography

Prairie potholes are small, shallow lakes that are somewhat rare in Wisconsin. Surrounded by open grassland, they are irresistible to marshland songbirds and waterfowl of all types. The Willow River SNA and Three Lakes are a collection of small lakes that attract Ruddy Ducks, Blue-wing, Northern Shoveler and Canada Geese in good numbers. Herons and egrets and gulls use the area along with Pied-billed Grebes. In the grasslands surrounding the potholes, you-Æll find Sedge Wrens, Dickcissels, Bobolinks, Western Meadowlarks, and Common Yellow-throated Warblers, as well as Grasshopper Sparrows, Northern Harriers and Short-eared Owls.

Hours of Operation

Open all year.


Exit 4 North from I 94. Follow Cty A north from Willow River State Park one mile to Burkhardt Rd. east to Cty E. Then follow E east for one mile. The lakes will be south of the road.

Natural Attractions Type

  • Parks, Forests, Trails
  • Wildlife Refuge & Reserves