From spring to autumn, Montana residents and visitors enjoy watching common loons on Montana’s lakes and large waterways.

Now you can help by reporting your Montana loon sightings.
We’d love to receive your sightings of migrating loons in Eastern Montana, too!


Report by Mobile App

We are pleased to invite the public to submit their Common Loon Observations using Survey123, a free mobile data collection app.

Common Loon Working Group (CLWG) Area Coordinators

For information on how to download and use the app, please contact your local Common Loon Working Group (CLWG) Area Loon Coordinator.

Click here to view our printable CLWG Area Coordinator list and map.

The CLWG Area Coordinators serve the area they are from.

Report by Email

Common Loon Sightings in Montana can also be reported by email using this Montana Loon Survey Form.

To print this form, please click on our printable Montana Loon Survey Form. After printing and filling out the form, please scan the form and email it to the CLWG Area Coordinator from the area closest to where you saw the loon(s). Forms do not have to be printed in color to be reported, but it is recommended that you familiarize yourself with the size and color of the loons in the pictures on the form.

The two number threes seen on the 1st page of the Montana Loon Survey Form is not a mistake. These sightings can both be reported as a Number 3 chick. The first Number 3 shows a chick with smoother contour brownish- or reddish- gray feathers that is 4 weeks old. By 9 weeks, these feathers are being replaced with gray contour feathers, but the chick has not yet grown to its full size, nor developed a full set of flight feathers.
Even if the reporter is not familiar with some of the loon behaviors listed on the Survey Form, the form can still be filled out and notes made at the end. A map of the lake noting where the loons were seen can also be helpful.

Report by Mail

To Report a Montana Common Loon Sighting by mail, print the above Common Loon Survey Form above. (Again, it does not have to be printed in color.) After filling it out, mail it to the Area Coordinator on that map that is closest to the loon sighting. (Area office addresses can be found on each area’s office website.)

Hard copies of this survey form sent to the Montana Loon Society (P.O. Box 2386, Missoula, MT 59806) will be mailed to the Common Loon Working Group.


The Montana Loon Society, in conjunction with the Common Loon Working Group, is offering two cash prizes each year for observations of banded loons or confirmed unbanded breeding loons. (Breeding loons are those with a mate, nest, or chicks.)

Click here to view our printable Loon Band Contest Rules.

Two $100 awards will be decided by a random drawing from all individuals who submitted at least one observation. To encourage early observations, one drawing will occur in mid-June and the other in mid-July. Send band observations to Jami Belt of Glacier National Park, (406.888.7986)
The most useful band reports are the ones that come in as soon as possible, so send them in as you see them, even if you are not 100% sure of your observation. Qualified observations will be determined and counted solely by the CLWG.
See the second page of the Contest Rules for information about how to observe and report loon bands. Winners will be announced at the Montana Common Loon Working Group Summer meeting in July.
Federal and State government employees are not eligible for the cash reward if they observe loons as part of their job.


Get In Touch

P.O. Box 2386 Missoula, MT 59806

Common Loon Images Provided by:

@Daniel Poleschook, Jr. and Virginia R. Poleschook