Glacier National Park's Citizen Science Program

Volunteers learn how to survey for loons, NPS Photo Learning how to identify noxious weeds, NPS PhotoCitizen scientist looking through a scope, NPS Photo

The Glacier National Park Citizen Science Program engages park visitors, students, and staff in collection of scientific information that would otherwise be unavailable to resource managers and researchers. Since 2005, the Citizen Science Program has invited members of the public to assist in biological research while recreating in the park. The program is coordinated by the Crown of the Continent Research Learning Center (CCRLC), based in Glacier National Park. 

For citizen scientists, the rewards are a sense of stewardship, a greater awareness of the park’s resource issues, and an expanded insight in ecological research methods. For the park, citizen science provides a wealth of baseline data that increases our understanding of priority wildlife and plant species. It also enables us to begin addressing the growing list of research and monitoring needs in spite of personnel and funding constraints.

Current Citizen Science Projects

The CCRLC is currently facilitating three citizen science projects, made possible through the generous support of the Glacier National Park Conservancy:

Common Loon Citizen Science Project: Field surveys are conducted by citizen scientists at 45 priority lakes in Glacier National Park to document population size and reproductive success of common loons.

High Country Citizen Science Project: Citizen scientists participate in backcountry surveys to collect data on the number and distribution of three species of concern found in Glacier’s high country: mountain goats, pikas, and bighorn sheep.

Invasive Plant Citizen Science Project: Hikers document the presence or absence of five noxious weeds along Glacier's hiking trails to assist the park’s Invasive Plant Management team with early detection of weeds invading the park’s backcountry.

Learn more about each of our citizen science projects by visiting the links below. If you are interested in becoming a citizen scientist at Glacier National Park, please email