Community Science

Explore Your World with Community Science

You don’t need to be a scientist to do community science—the only requirement is your own curiosity! Community science with the National Aviary brings opportunities for families and individuals throughout southwestern Pennsylvania to engage in the scientific process and discover the natural world in their own backyard or local park. Community science is real science that uses the interest and ability of large numbers of people to make accurate observations of nature. National Aviary researchers work with community members to teach them what to look for, what information to collect, and how to record and submit their data. Community science can contribute significantly to scientific studies of birds. Projects like the Christmas Bird Count and the Great Backyard Bird Count have used the observations of community members for decades!

We invite people to help with studies of nesting backyard birds, migrating owls, and wintering hummingbirds.

Project Owlnet

Project Owlnet is a continent-wide research effort to understand the migration of Northern Saw-whet Owls.

Neighborhood Nestwatch 

The National Aviary works with dozens of families in urban, suburban, and rural areas around Pittsburgh to document the survival and reproductive success of eight common bird species.

Tracking Western Hummingbirds

The National Aviary Ornithologist Bob Mulvihill follows up on reports of unusual hummingbirds. Banding these tiny birds helps scientists understand their migration patterns.

In The News

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Kidsburgh’s 2023 big guide to summer camps in Pittsburgh and the region | Kidsburgh

The National Aviary summer camps are superhero-themed and focus on the amazing adaptations that birds possess.

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7 Adorable Proposal Stories – & What We Can Learn From Them | DatingNews.com

On one particular occasion, the National Aviary was able to pull off a grand proposal that included penguins playing as the true love masterminds behind it all.

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Feed A Sloth At National Aviary In Pennsylvania For An Adorable Adventure | Only in Your State

Explore the National Aviary in Pittsburgh, a family-friendly destination that’s home to countless birds and a few mammals – from penguins and bald eagles to sloths.

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How Are Visitors — And Birds — Reacting To The National Aviary’s New Wetlands? | Pittsburgh Magazine

Four months after the National Aviary opened its $3 million renovated Wetlands exhibit, the space is getting high marks — not only from visitors, but also from the birds.

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