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FWBS Exclusive Tours

Woodcocks Gone Wild!

April 1, 2023; 6:30pm - 8:30pm

(Weather date: April 8)

Cost - $10 per person

Join us for our annual evening outing for the sky-dancing of the American Woodcock at Pineland Farms in New Gloucester. Witness the spectacular show as this cryptic and secretive species erupts in a swirling and twirling display of sound and flight. Displaying Wilson's Snipe are also possible.

See the recap of our 2022 trip to see what you can expect.

 

Meeting location TBA. Pre-registration is not required.

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Monhegan Spring Migration Weekend

May 26 - 29, 2023

Cost - $65 per day, see below.

Join Derek on Monhegan during the height of spring migration for 1-4 days searching the island for regular visitors, rarities, and vagrants. This is a casual outing, with boat and hotel reservations, as well as meals, on your own. Although we are likely to eat meals together, we'll have more flexibility on rooming and eating arrangements this way. Also, you can come and go as you please, based on whatever boat and departure times and locations suit you best. Sign up for 1,2, 3,or 4 days, we will let you know the time and place to meet based on your arrival.

Late May is a fantastic time to visit Maine’s Monhegan Island. Warblers in their summer finery are pouring through the Northeast, and many will drift over the Gulf of Maine on their nocturnal flights. Come dawn, the birds seek refuge on land, and Monhegan Island is perfectly positioned to catch arrivals. Rapidly changing weather conditions can result in massive “fallouts” of tired migrants, many of which will forage in the rocks on the shoreline. The possibility of overshoots from the south and vagrants from almost any direction adds icing to the cake of the fantastic birding afforded by this quaint little island. 


Once again, we’ll be staying at the Trailing Yew (although folks are welcome, as always, to stay elsewhere). We have blocked off rooms for 8 people each night. Reservations are made through the Trailing Yew. While we don’t have a group rate, the reasonable price includes an excellent breakfast. A flashlight or a sleeping bag, if you are one to get cold at night, are also recommended. No matter where you are staying on Monhegan, however, bring one more layer than you think you will need!

 

Remember, you do not have to stay or eat with us, but of course, your company is most welcome! Coffee and tea are also available wherever you choose to stay before breakfast, to fuel those first couple of hours of birding. About one week or so before the date, you'll receive an email with a daily schedule for what times and where each walk will meet. That way, you can come and go as you please, feeling free to take in the museum, art galleries, hiking trails, etc...or just sleep in!

Check out Derek's blog for a rundown of the 2014 tour in which a first state record Brewer's Sparrow was the icing on the cake of a weekend that included 94 species (including 19 species of warblers), and many other goodies, such as a Summer Tanager, 2 Orchard Orioles, a Clay-colored Sparrow, an exceptional Eastern Kingbird show, and some outstanding views of many species of warblers:
 

Our 2016 tour featured 98 species including 20 species of warblers, along with a Purple Martin, White-eyed Vireo, both Red and White-winged Crossbills, a roosting Common Nighthawk and an exclusive bird-friendly beer!

During the 2017 tour, we had good looks at Summer Tanagers, Cattle Egrets, and Orange-crowned Warbler. 
 

On our 2018 tour , 97 species were highlighted by 18 species of warblers including lots of Blackpoll, Tennessee, and Blackburnians and 1 Mourning; a Brant and 3 Eastern Bluebirds (rare on the island), Summer Tanager, Red Crossbills, and a whole lot more. 

The 2019 tour produced a warbler fallout along with White-winged and Eurasian Collared Doves (Maine's second state record!).

The 2021 tour had a very nice crossbill showing. And, the 2022 tour featured a very cooperative Black-billed Cuckoo.

PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED BY CONTACTING US DIRECTLY. Hotel and ferry reservations must be made on your own. The trip is limited to 10 people per day. 

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Birds of Casco Bay - Boat Tour

July 6, 2023 

9:00-11:30am

October 6, 2023 

9:00 - 11:30am

Cost - $45 (adult)/$25 (child)

July:

Join the crew of Seacoast Tours and Derek Lovitch from Freeport Wild Bird Supply on a special tour of the islands and waters of Casco Bay. We’ll explore the inner islands of Freeport, Brunswick and Harpswell as we search for osprey, eagles, eiders, Common Terns, and an occasional seal basking in the sun on the ledges of hidden coves. We’ll focus on the common breeding water and shoreline birds of the region, including photographic opportunities whenever we can, but without disturbing any nests.

 

Conditions and tide permitting, we’ll poke around the mouth of Maquoit Bay and especially up into Middle Bay, where species not usually seen in Maine in the warmer months often linger. These could include all three species of scoters, Common and perhaps even Red-throated Loon, and Long-tailed Duck – all of which have spent a summer in Middle Bay over the past few years. Shorebird migration will be well underway, and we'll check a few offshore islets that are prime roosting areas for a variety of migrants.

 

October:

Join the crew of Seacoast Tours and Derek Lovitch from Freeport Wild Bird Supply on a special tour of the islands and waters of Casco Bay. We’ll explore the inner islands of Freeport, Brunswick and Harpswell as we search for eagles, migrant waterfowl, and an occasional seal basking in the sun on the ledges of hidden coves. We’ll focus on the common resident and migratory water and shoreline birds of the region, including photographic opportunities whenever we can.

 

Conditions and tide permitting, we’ll poke around the mouth of Maquoit Bay and especially up into Middle Bay, two of the richest areas for waterfowl concentrations.  If we can find a mass of American Black Ducks, we'll scour them for a variety of other dabblers, such as Green-winged Teal and Northern Shovelers.  Some of our wintering and migratory bayducks, such as Surf and White-winged Scoters will just be arriving, and Common Loons begin to build in for the winter. 

Our July 2022 and October 2022 tour reports are posted on our website to give you an idea of what we saw.  On our June 2021 trip, unexpected highlights included a Lesser Black-backed Gull and a Roseate Tern, while in July of 2022, we found an oversummering Surf Scoter in addition to the usual summer denizens. 

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Monhegan Fall Migration Weekend

September 29 - October 2, 2023

Cost - $65 per day; see below.

Join Derek on Monhegan during the height of migration for 1-3 days searching the island for regular visitors, rarities, and vagrants. If you haven't experienced Maine's Migration Mecca, now is the time! And if you're like many of our regular travelers, you know you can't wait to get back.

This is a casual outing, with boat and hotel reservations, as well as meals, on your own. Also, you can come and go as you please, based on whatever boat and departure times and locations suit you best. Sign up for 1,2, 3, or 4 days, we will give you the time and place to meet us on the island based on when you arrive.

Once again, we’ll be staying at the Trailing Yew (although folks are welcome, as always, to stay elsewhere). We have blocked off rooms for 8 people each night. Reservations are made through the Trailing Yew. While we don’t have a group rate, the reasonable price includes an excellent breakfast. A flashlight or a sleeping bag, if you are one to get cold at night, are also recommended. No matter where you are staying on Monhegan, however, bring one more layer than you think you will need!

Remember, you do not have to stay or eat with us, but of course, your company is most welcome! Coffee and tea are also available wherever you choose to stay before breakfast, to fuel those first couple of hours of birding. About one week or so before the date, you'll receive an email with a daily schedule for what times and where each walk will meet. That way, you can come and go as you please, feeling free to take in the museum, art galleries, hiking trails, etc...or just sleep in!


In the eleven years we have run this trip on this weekend, we have averaged 95 species, including 17 species of warblers! Here are Derek’s tour reports to see what you are missing!:

20132014201520162017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021,2022

 

Don’t miss this year’s excitement!

PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED BY CONTACTING US DIRECTLY. Hotel and ferry reservations must be made on your own. The trip is limited to 10 people per day.

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