Port Orford Field Station 

OSU research and education field station, part of OSU's coast-wide Marine Studies Initiative.

Port Orford Field Station

The Port Orford Field Station is located on the wind-swept southern coast of Oregon, just south of Cape Blanco, the westernmost point of Oregon. Cape Blanco also forms a biogeographic boundary that separates the Californian from the Oregonian ocean bioregions of the California Current Large Marine Ecosystem. This means that Port Orford is located in an ecoregion more similar to that of Northern California than that of coastal Oregon north of Cape Blanco, providing rich opportunities to explore, study, and research the unique attributes of this region. It has been officially operated by Oregon State University since 2016. 

Research supported by the Port Orford Field Station:

  • Research and monitoring at the nearby Redfish Rocks Marine Reserve on adult fish movement, SCUBA surveys, Hook and Line (catch and release) surveys of fish populations, ROV (remote operated vehicles) fitted with underwater cameras, benthic surveys, oceanographic monitoring, including ocean acidification

  • Gray whale foraging behavior (now in it’s 10th year!) with the GEMM Lab at the Marine Mammal Institute

  • River Otter predation on Sea birds - OSU Graduate student Luke Stuntz is studying the impacts of mesocarnivores on seabird populations.

  • Kelp2Whales - Sea Grant-funded project examining the connections between bull kelp and whales

  • ORKA - The station supports the Oregon Kelp Alliance (ORKA), a diverse group promoting healthy kelp forests in Oregon, and piloting a kelp forest restoration area at nearby Nellie’s Cove at Orford Heads

Internships supported at the Port Orford Field Station:

  • Gray whale foraging behavior (with GEMM lab) - including two High School student internships

  • Oregon Sea Grant Summer Scholars

  • Marine Reserve Interpretation & Science Communication Internship

  • You can view more Marine Studies internships HERE

Housed at the field station 

Port Orford Sustainable Seafood - this local seafood processing business operates in the Field Station building and offers a community-supported fishery providing local Port Orford seafood to Oregonians from Portland to Ashland.

SCUBA Diver Support

The Station provides air fills for SCUBA divers - scientific divers carrying out research in the surrounding waters, sport divers exploring the rich rocky habitats of the south coast, and commercial divers working in area marinas. Since opening, we have provided 100’s of tank fills for scientific, sport, and commercial divers.

Room Reservations

Fees can be found in the OSU Fee Book HERE.  

Click here to request a room reservation.

Port Orford Field Station Address

Physical Location:

444 Jackson St. 1 block seaward of Highway 101

Mailing Address: 

PO Box 143

Port Orford, OR 97465