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GEORGE MIKSCH SUTTON AVIAN RESEARCH CENTER INC

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animals, Wildlife Preservation & Protection

Mission: The George Miksch Sutton Avian Research Center (Sutton Center) was founded in 1983 with the mission of finding cooperative conservation solutions for birds and the natural world through science and education. The Sutton Center is a private, nonprofit organization located near Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and has been affiliated with the Oklahoma Biological Survey in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Oklahoma since 1997. The Sutton Center has become a leader in avian research and conservation and has conducted intensive, conservation-oriented, ecological field research on declining grassland birds, developed and applied techniques for the reintroduction and monitoring of Southern Bald Eagles, managed the successful captive breeding of endangered species and performed bird surveys across the world. In addition, the Sutton Center boasts several educational outreach programs using live birds and interactive, internet technology that reach tens of thousands of students and adults each year.

Results: Between 1984 and 1992 the Sutton Center raised and released 275 Southern Bald Eagles in the southeastern U.S. Bald Eagle eggs were removed from nests in Florida and transported to our captive breeding facility in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. Once at our captive breeding facility, the eggs were incubated, hatched, and the resulting eaglets were raised and released in high quality habitat in five southeastern states. In many cases, the captively-raised Bald Eagles have returned to their release sites to establish territories and nests. Each year we conduct aerial and ground surveys in the vicinity of Oklahoma release sites to determine nest occupancy rates and productivity. Since 1990, the number of Bald Eagle nests in Oklahoma has increased almost annually to a record 55 nests in 2005. We believe these increases are a direct result of our restoration program, as adult eagles are now returning to breed in the areas where they were released. In addition, eagles released by the Sutton Center have been observed nesting in Kansas, Texas, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. As fledglings from these nests reach adulthood, we expect the number of nests to continue to increase. Partially as a result of our efforts here at the Sutton Avian Research Center, the Bald Eagle population in most areas of the U.S. had increased sufficiently for the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the Bald Eagle from the Endangered Species List in June of 2007! To see all of our work that has been done over the years, please follow this link: http://www.suttoncenter.org/pages/researchconservation There is a side-bar on the left side of the page that lists all of our work.

Programs: Promote conservation, education, and research of endangered, rare, and under studied birds.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a contributing member and volunteer for the Sutton Avian Research Center for many years, and I give them the highest rating for several reasons. First of all, they are a well-established, science-based conservation organization that has been instrumental in the restoration and preservation of some of the country's most beloved bird species, including the bald eagle and the prairie chicken. Recently, they have expanded to restoration of a lesser-known but no less important species, the masked bobwhite quail. The extremely knowledgable and experienced staff is also warmly welcoming to volunteers who want to help with their causes. Additionally, The Sutton Center is a passionate supporter of childhood environmental education. Through past classroom demonstrations and the very popular statewide high school art contest, the Natureworks Sutton Award, they have increased awareness of environmental issues among young people.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is extremely proud of our long lasting partnership with the G.M. Sutton Avian Research Center (Sutton Center) for the recovery of Endangered Species. We greatly appreciate their collaboration on the recovery of the critically endangered Masked Bobwhite Quail. Since the Sutton Center's involvement, we have accomplished milestones in survival and reproduction not reached in over 30 years. Thank you Sutton!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been involved with the Avian Research center since 2014 through my professional affiliation. This organization has been a giant in the field of avian conservation for declining grassland birds and Southern Bald Eagles. Their successful captive breeding of endangered species and pioneering of bird survey techniques and publications, not just in Oklahoma, but across the world have provided a wealth of information to help conserve global bird populations.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It has been one of the best experiences of my life being a volunteer for Sutton Center. I am a member of the Bald Eagle Survey Team. We formed in 2010 with four initial members and we've grown to at least twenty, scattered statewide in Oklahoma. Every winter we survey a growing number of eagle nests. I've made many good friends through this activity. I never get tired of seeing that beautiful white head and gold beak peeking just over the edge of the nest.
Judy Bryant, Coweta, OK

Volunteer

Rating: 5

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Noah C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering at the Sutton Avian Research Center for over 8 years now and it has been a wonderful experience. I have helped with live shows, maintenance, construction, feeding the birds and countless other projects. If you want to volunteer at a place that has a huge impact on the environment and wildlife conservation, then look no further. The Sutton Avian Research Center is the place for you.