Owl Research

Fifteen species of owls in Montana
Short eared owl sitting on snow.  Photo by Dave Fitzpatrick, USFWS

For more than 25 years, the Owl Research Institute (ORI) has been dedicated to scientific research of owls — their ecology, natural history, and habitat relationships. The mission of the Owl Research Institute is three-fold – 1) RESEARCH: To study the ecology of owls and their communities and to provide information about their life and natural histories; 2) EDUCATION: To share research and supply tools for informed stewardship; and 3) CONSERVATION: To inspire public interest in wildlife research and conservation. 

The Institute’s research station, the Ninepipes Center, is located on the Flathead Indian Reservation in the Mission Valley of western Montana. The Ninepipes Center belongs to a large-scale riparian corridor, host to critical habitat during nesting and migration and one of the best sites for raptors in North America. From the center, researchers have close access to field sites, and program participants have ample opportunity for in-the-field experience and wildlife observation. 

Nearby neighbors include the Mission Mountains to the east, Moiese hills to the west, and National Bison Range to the south. The nearest neighbor is the Ninepipe National Wildlife Refuge, a network of marshes, ponds, and grasslands. The area is rich in plants, insects, fish, reptiles, and mammals. The area also hosts a newly restored population of Trumpeter Swans. 

Because owls are nocturnal, the Institute has to set up live web cams on nests to study them at night. One is on a great horned owl and the newest camera is on a long eared owl nest. Follow the link to the owl cams. And remember, while you may see the owls during the day, more activity will occur at dark. 

For a list of publications and other scientific information, visit the ORI website.

 ORI logo.520x180.IN Research owls 

Facts About Owl Research

Denver Holt, Founder and President 

Owl Research Institute
PO Box 39
Charlo, MT 59824
Phone (406) 644-3412
Fax (406) 644-3416