Montana Audubon

Montana Audubon works at the local, state and national policy levels to protect our natural heritage.

Owen Sowerwine Natural Area

Owen Sowerwine Natural Area is a designated Important Bird Area for the State of Montana. Montana Audubon has a license on this 442-acre parcel of school trust land located at the confluence of the Flathead and Stillwater Rivers. Cottonwood trees and other riparian vegetation dominate the parcel. It is the first—and only—state natural area designated on school trust land in Montana. Flathead Audubon and Montana Audubon fought a two-year battle with the state to be able to continue a license on this property.

Owen Sowerwine is a great place for birds. Located just outside the city limits of Kalispell, this designated Natural Area protects important riparian habitat. The water, black cottonwood forest, large birch trees, and tangle of understory make this area a magnet for wildlife. Bird surveys conducted by the Flathead Chapter have documented 51 species of likely breeders.

Montana Audubon has completed a Master Plan for the Owen Sowerwine IBA, the first site in our Important Bird Area system to receive a formal conservation plan. The State Land Board approved this plan in January 2003.

Owen Sowerwine Master Plan:

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