Research Use

Several agencies have policies in place for researchers wishing to conduct studies on natural areas.  The purposes for these policies include to:

  • Ensure that the ecological integrity of the natural area is not affected
  • Foster collaboration among researchers working at the same sites
  • Ensure that new studies do not affect ongoing research
  • Maintain records of research activities and results of benefit to the agency and other researchers
  • Help increase awareness of any research findings that have management implications.

Click on an agency below for more information.  If an agency is not listed, you should contact the agency directly to determine how to get approval.  


Forest Service

All research activities on Oregon, Washington, and Alaska RNAs require approval by the Pacific Northwest (PNW) Station Director.  The exception is RNAs located in wilderness, wild and scenic rivers, or other congressionally-designated areas (see where the Regional Forester approves research with the concurrence of the Station Director.  Research proposals are also reviewed by the District Ranger, the PNW Research Natural Areas (RNA) Coordinator, and the Station Director’s Office.   Before applying, you are encouraged to discuss your project with the PNW RNA Coordinator, a Forest Service scientist, District or Forest staff, and/or the local District Ranger.

Download the RNA Research Approval Request Form.

Please send the completed request form to:
Dr. Todd M. Wilson, PNW RNA Coordinator
PNW Research station, Corvallis Forestry Sciences Laboratory
3200 SW Jefferson Way
Corvallis, OR 97331
Phone: 541-750-7288

Bureau of Land Management

To conduct research on one of BLM’s Research Natural Areas or other Areas of Critical Environmental Concern, contact the lead botanist for the District in which the natural area resides.


Burns District
28910 Hwy 20 West
Hines, OR 97738
Telephone: 541-573-4400
Coos Bay District
1300 Airport Lane
North Bend, OR 97459
Telephone: 541-756-0100
Eugene District
3106 Pierce Parkway, Suite E
Springfield, OR 97477
Telephone: 541-683-6600 / 888-442-3061
Lakeview District Office
1301 South G Street
Lakeview, OR 97630
Telephone: 541-947-2177
Medford District Office
3040 Biddle Road
Medford, OR 97504
Telephone: 541-618-2200
Prineville District Office
3050 N.E. 3rd Street
Prineville, OR 97754
Telephone: 541-416-6700
Roseburg District Office
777 N.W. Garden Valley Boulevard
Roseburg, OR 97470
Telephone: 541-440-4930
Salem District Office
1717 Fabry Road, S.E.
Salem, OR 97306
Telephone: 503-375-5646
Spokane District Office
1103 N. Fancher Road
Spokane, WA 99212
Telephone: 509-536-1200
Vale District Office
100 Oregon Street
Vale, OR 97918
Telephone: 541-473-3144