Winter Pelagic birding opportunity in Maine’s Acadia region


Black-legged kittiwakes have been spied on previous January bird counts. Michael Good photo. Start your 2013 bird list in the Gulf of Maine. Michael Good of Down East Nature Tours and the Acadia Birding Festival (May 30-June 2, 2013) is recruiting hardy, experienced birders for a special, one-day, Pelagic birding trip, called Sea Bird Count (SeaBC), on Jan. 18, 19,or 20  2013. Here’s his description of the trip:

We will spend the day aboard, “The Osprey” which is owned and operated by the College of the Atlantic. The captain, Toby Stephenson, is a friend and colleague with whom I have worked for many years. The trip will take us south of MDI to the Ducks than we are off to Mount Desert Rock. If the weather cooperates, we will have an opportunity to go out to the northern edge of Jordan Basin where I have collected data for SeaBC over the last two winters. This trip will make the third SeaBC for the region and hopefully an opportunity to survey the Gulf of Maine on a yearly basis.

Dovekie  Jordan Basin. Michael Good photoGood promises “close-up views of many of the Pelagic birds of the Gulf of Maine and an opportunity to chase after specialty birds for photography.” Possible sightings include: Dovekie, Razorbill, Northern Fulmar, Atlantic Puffin, Greater Shearwater, or Jaegers. “We will have opportunities to spend time with the rarer species and work some flocks of birds we find along the way out and back.”

Gray Morph and light adult Northern Fulmar Jordan Basin. Michael Good photoThe Date: Participants must be flexible with their schedules, as Good is working a three-day window during which time the trip will occur.” If there is a window of weather opportunity from Friday to Sunday we will choose the best day with comfortable seas. The weather will dictate how far off shore we will be capable of going. You should plan of Friday 18th, Saturday 19th or Sunday 20th as days that we will have to make this trip possible.”  The full day trip will depart at 5:45 a.m. from the Northeast Harbor Town Pier.

Gray phase N. Fulmar. Michael Good photoClothing: This will be a cold day simply because of the time of year. Thermals and wind gear a must. Hand and feet warmers are highly recommended to make the day comfortable. Food and water will not be provided. A potluck concept around food would be a great thing for the day.

The Price: Cost will be around $75 per person depending on the total number of participants. Good hopes to have around 15-20 people to make this trip reasonably cost effective.

Want to know more? Contact Good at 207-288-8128 or 207-479-4256 or


  1. I just wanted to thank Hilary Nangle for her support over the many years I have known her. She is a real American asset and she understands the power of the written word. The pelagic trip should be a total blast and another unique opportunity to better understand the birds of the Gulf of Maine. Every boat trip during the winter months adds to our collective understanding about what species are utilizing the GOM. Many of these birds co-habitat with Whales so we are hopeful to catch a glimpse of these amazing marine mammals. I hope you can join us on this SeaBC.

    Many thanks to you Hilary

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