Climbing and Raptors

Seasonal climbing restrictions to protect nesting raptors (including closures of portions of cliffs) have been implemented since the 1970s in the US and other countries and is growing fast. There are several reasons for this, including the presence of raptors nest in cliffs, increase in the popularity of rock climbing, and more effective raptor monitoring programs.

Climbers should respect these closures and in general there is a good record of supporting raptor nesting restrictions. Continued compliance will be critical in developing and maintaining good relations with biologists and resource managers. You can also improve this relationship and conservation by volunteering to help raptor biologists, e.g: raptor monitoring, circulating local information on restrictions, positioning signs, and providing observations to resource managers on new raptor sightings or unusual behavior. Climbers can also assist managers in areas like banding work, where roped access or technical climbing skills are required to gain access to cliff ledges.

Check out the Access Fund’s handbook that provides guidance for managing technical climbing to protect raptors nest sites.

Click here to see many different FEDME’s documents on this topic.

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