Portland Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary
Portland Audubon’s 172-acre Wildlife Sanctuary is nestled against Forest Park just ten minutes from downtown Portland. The free-to-the-public sanctuary is family friendly, has more than four miles of forested hiking trails, and is a safe-haven for native flora and fauna. Our on-site facilities include the Wildlife Care Center, outdoor enclosures where you can meet educational birds, an interpretive center which features exhibits and places to watch birds, and the Nature Store. Click here for directions and our trail map, and information on our accessibility.
Visit us at 5151 NW Cornell Road, Portland, OR 97210
- Founder’s Trail is temporarily closed do to downed trees (1/5/23) – it is expected to be back opened by mid-next week hopefully.
- The Wren Trail is permanently closed.
- Access to the pond and pond pavilion are temporarily closed and inaccessible to the public, while repairs are being made.
- Our Wildlife Care Center is currently closed due to frozen pipes bursting during a cold snap in December. Read more about that here.
Note: Visiting During COVID-19
The Portland Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary trails are open to visitors. We have made adjustments to keep our community safe while still providing much needed access to nature.
Before you arrive, please make note of the following:
- Observe all trail signs & maintain physical distancing
- The Nature Store is open! Shop in store or online and choose from in store pick-up or have your items shipped.
- The Wildlife Care Center remains open. Please view their COVID-19 protocols for dropping off injured and orphaned wildlife.
What to Know Before You Arrive
- The wildlife sanctuary is free to the public and family friendly.
- Our trails are open from dawn until dusk. View our trail map.
- The interpretive center and Nature Store are currently open for in-person visits.
- The Wildlife Care Center is currently closed and cannot receive injured or orphaned wildlife currently.
- No dogs are allowed on Portland Audubon’s Wildlife Sanctuary trails, please. Birds and other animals have keen senses of sight, smell and hearing; they think of dogs – even the friendliest ones – as predators. Upper Macleay in Forest Park is dog friendly and right next to our sanctuary.
- Our sanctuary is smoke and fire free.
- We do not offer public rentals.
- Be considerate and respectful of the wildlife, the land, and other visitors.
Plants and Wildlife
Walk our trails to find plant species like Western Red Cedar, Douglas Fir, Vine Maple, and Western Hemlock, with understories of Salal, Sword Fern, Trillium, and Thimble Berry. A small stand of old-growth Douglas Firs stands as testimony to the giants that once graced the temperate rainforests of the Pacific Northwest.
Listen, look for sign, and watch for wildlife like Northern Pygmy Owls, Anna’s Hummingbirds, Varied Thrush, Steller’s Jays, Pacific Wrens, Pileated Woodpeckers, Wilson’s Warblers, Chestnut-backed Chickadees Coastal Giant Salamanders, Red-legged Frogs, Rough-skinned Newts, and Douglas Squirrels. View our bird checklist for the sanctuary!
History of the Land
Histories of Native Peoples and Post Settler History
Portland Audubon worked with David Lewis PhD to put together a detailed history of Native peoples and their use and early settlement of the land that became the Portland Audubon Society’s Wildlife Sanctuary.
History of the Portland Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary
The 172-acre Portland Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary exists today thanks to families and donors who have permanently attached their legacies to Portland Audubon through generous acts to expand this special place and protect habitat and wildlife.
1929: Portland Audubon’s acquires it’s first piece of land, when 12 acres of a former dairy farm were purchased with private funds.
1930: The Pittock family donated 18 acres.
1982/1983: Additional land protections occurred in 1982, establishing the 34-acre Uhtoff Sanctuary.
2008: The 86-acre Collins Sanctuary, owned by Metro and managed by Portland Audubon, was added to the sanctuary.
2018: The Kehoe family donated 22-acres, adding the Katherine Lynn Kehoe Sanctuary.