We used receptor autoradiography to determine the distribution of excitatory amino acid (EAA) binding site subtypes in the periaqueductal gray (PAG) of the rat. N-Methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA), kainate, quisqualate-ionotropic, and quisqualate-metabotropic binding sites were all present in the PAG. Distribution was inhomogeneous with greatest density of all binding site subtypes in the dorsolateral subdivision and lowest density in the ventrolateral subdivision. Relative to regions of brain with high densities of EAA binding site subtypes, quisqualate-metabotropic binding sites had the highest relative density and NMDA binding sites the least. The presence of all subtypes of EAA binding sites in the PAG suggests that EAA action within the PAG is likely to be complex. © 1990.