Several Sacajawea Audubon members maintain and monitor bluebird boxes around the Gallatin Valley. Some members are also federally permitted to band birds through the US Geological Survey.
This project was started in 1969 by Louis Moos and other Sacajawea Audubon members, and expanded in the 1970s & 1980s by Mary Geis. The bluebird trail system now encompasses three monitored routes, each with around 100 nest boxes.
Volunteers go out every two weeks during the nesting season (mid-April to early August) to check the boxes, and collect data. Banding data is sent to the Bird Banding Lab.
Monitoring bluebird boxes gives volunteers an up-close and personal look at the lives of these amazing birds, including nest building, egg laying and raising young.
Through banding, it's possible to learn that many of these bluebirds return each year to nest, sometimes to the exact same box.
If you are interested in learning more about the bluebird trail, contact Lou Ann Harris at 600-3585 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.