The Birds of Prey Area was recognized by falconers and raptor enthusiasts as containing an unusually high number of nesting raptors. There were over 1,000 nesting pairs of raptors representing 15 species, and another 5-10 non-nesting raptor species.
- The first golden eagle survey was completed.
Late 1960 and early 1970
- University of Idaho students studied golden eagles and prairie falcons.
- BLM began a land use planning process which stressed the need for more information regarding raptors and their habitat requirements.
- Secretary of Interior Rogers C.B. Morton dedicated 26,714 acres along the Snake River as the Snake River Birds of Prey Natural Area (Public Land Order (PLO) 5133).
- Public Law 103-64 was passed on August 4, establishing the 485,000 acre Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area.
- Public Law 111-11 was passed on March 30. Section 2301 of this law, formally recognized the contributions of Morley Nelson to the establishment of the NCA by renaming it the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area. Morley Nelson was a local falconer who in the 1970s and 1980s was instrumental in raising awareness of the significance of the Snake River Canyon for birds of prey, and strongly advocated for its protection.