We seek to understand how birds use the habitats available and how that will change as we work to create more diverse plant communities. We also host researchers that document migrations of raptors and songbirds across MPG. For a bird species list, click here.
In this section of the research pages, you will find links to reports and updates from all the researchers involved with avian ecology, posted chronologically. The links will show you more in-depth reports on our findings. The three main projects covered here are:
Songbird Counts- A grid of sampling points covers MPG with 560 points. We visit each point 3 times a year, once in winter and twice during the songbird breeding season. We record, by ear or by sight, all the birds near that point for 10 minutes (video documentary). For the most up to date information on the ranch-wide song bird census (point count survey), click here.
Songbird Banding- The Avian Science Center of the University of Montana runs several trapping stations at MPG as part of their regional songbird monitoring program. The Avian Science Center sets up very fine nets that are nearly invisible to birds in brushy habitats. Songbirds fly into the nets and become entangled. The researchers take the birds from the nets and affix a numbered band to their leg before releasing them. For the latest comprehensive songbird banding report, click here.
Raptor Research- The Raptor View Research Institute monitors raptor populations on MPG and counts raptors that migrate past MPG in the spring and fall. Raptor View researchers have placed transmitters on osprey and golden eagles that use the Bitterroot Valley. For the latest report on raptor migration counts, and to find out where the raptors go durring their migrations click here.