Marbled Murrelet Survey at Cape Perpetua

Cape Perpetua Central Coast | June – July

First listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1992, Marbled Murrelets are threatened by logging which has resulted in the destruction and fragmentation of the species’ nesting habitat. This community science project includes an overnight trip to the spectacular Yachats, Cape Perpetua, and Heceta Head area. Participants get a rare opportunity to see the endangered and elusive Marbled Murrelet in both its old-growth forest nesting grounds or in coastal waters where it forages.

The event starts with an evening presentation by a Marbled Murrelet expert Lindsay Adrean (American Bird Conservancy) and Bird Alliance of Oregon Ten Mile Creek Sanctuary manager, Paul Engelmeyer, and potentially other guests. The following day, participants get up early to help survey for Marbled Murrelets at a number of locations within the Globally Significant Important Bird Area.

This project helps keep track of murrelet use of Oregon’s central coast habitats while also building public awareness and support for this unique bird as we continue our decades-long fight for this species survival.

Partners: Oregon State University

Marbled Murrelet, Photo by Rich MacIntosh, USFWS

About the Survey

  • Survey instructions: Will be provided during the event
  • When: One overnight session is offered each July
  • Where: A number of sites in the Cape Perpetua area. Morning survey at upland sites from before sunrise for 2-hours (start time approx. 5:15am) and nearshore surveys at 6 coastal sites from 9-10 a.m.
  • Time commitment: 2 days + travel time
  • Reporting: Data forms provided to project leaders at end of the event


Volunteer Requirements

  • Birding skills: No bird identification experience required.
  • Equipment: Must have your own pair of binoculars. Bring a spotting scope if desired.
  • Field conditions:  The range of morning forest surveys vary from right at the Cape Perpetua Campground to sites that require a more adventurous hike before dawn. For the latter, be prepared for hiking on trails (some of them steep) in poor lighting conditions. Come prepared for cool, damp mornings.
  • Transportation to and from the training is your responsibility. Camping is available at numerous campgrounds in the area including group campsites: Siuslaw National Forest Camping, Cabins & Yurts.  Click here for a list of lodging options near Yachats, Oregon.



If you have any questions about this event contact Paul Engelmeyer, Bird Alliance of Oregon’s Ten Mile Creek Sanctuary manager (541-547-4227, or Joe Liebezeit, Staff Scientist (503-329-6026,