Important Note: We look forward to birding with you! To see the most recent update of our pre-tour and on-tour protocols and our requirements for travel, please visit our tour protocols page.
This exciting tour hits one of the most scenic states on the Atlantic Coast near the height of fall migration for many shorebird, songbird, and seabird species. We will seek a rich diversity of birds along the coast with emphasis on the regional specialties--from beak to claw (lobsters and fantastic seafood, anyone?).
As the Sanderling flies, there are just over 200 miles between the coast of New Brunswick and the coast of New Hampshire. However, the circuitous undulations of Maine's shoreline stretch out to more than 3500 miles! Rocky peninsulas, islands, rivers, and creeks draw a host of coastal migrants: sandpipers, plovers, dowitchers, yellowlegs, herons, and more. The rich waters of the Gulf of Maine attract many pelagic seabirds such as alcids, phalaropes, loons, shearwaters, storm-petrels, jaegers and skuas (if we are lucky). Migrant songbirds like warblers, vireos, thrushes, and sparrows pile up along the coast as well. Most notable among our coastal targets are Atlantic Puffin, Razorbill, Common Murre, Black Guillemot, Leach's Storm-Petrel, Pomarine Jaeger, Black-legged Kittiwake, Great Cormorant, and the rare Great Skua. Boreal habitat all the way Downeast gives us access to pursue specialties such as Spruce Grouse and Black-backed Woodpecker.
Our birding adventure together starts off with birding along the southern coast, based out of Portland. We will visit shorebirding hotspots like Biddeford Pool and Scarborough Marsh for good looks at sandpipers, plovers, yellowlegs, dowitchers and more. Searching forest and field should turn up a nice diversity of migrant songbirds too. From Portland, we will make our way up to Bar Harbor for four nights.
Bar Harbor will be our gateway to Acadia National Park and Downeast. A full-day pelagic trip organized by Maine Audubon will take us far out into the Gulf of Maine. We will likely see Black Guillemots, Wilson's Storm-Petrels, and Northern Gannets, and we'll remain vigilant for more uncommon encounters with the likes of Atlantic Puffin, Razorbill, Red Phalarope, Leach's Storm-Petrel, Pomarine Jaeger, multiple shearwater species, and the rare Great Skua! For our time ashore here, Acadia National Park is a national treasure and the gorgeous coastal sites in the park produce good birding as well.
Downeast, a second boat trip will be a private charter out of Eastport cruising the nutrient-rich waters Passamaquoddy Bay as far out as Head Harbor Passage. This adventure visits the mesmerizing "Old Sow," the largest whirlpool in the Western Hemisphere. We will likely encounter Minke Whale and Harbor Porpoise, and our scanning through the flocks of Bonaparte's Gulls might turn up rarities like Little Gull and Sabine's Gull. Great Cormorants and Black-legged Kittiwakes occur here reliably. Razorbills are typically close to the boat in good numbers, and Common Murres are a realistic possibility.
We'll spend the last chapter of our amazing adventure on enchanting Monhegan Island for several nights. This quaint fishing village and artist enclave sits ten miles off the mainland and also happens to be one of the best migration hotspots for songbirds in the Northeast. We will casually bird the small community and neighboring trails while taking life down a notch and disengaging from the rest of the world. Those fall warblers won't be so confusing by the time we take the ferry back to the mainland and head back to Portland to conclude the tour.
Select the KEY INFO tab or click here for our itinerary plus space requests, status, fees, limits, and guides for any departure.
"The tour couldn't have been better. Humpback Whales breaching, gannets plunging into the ocean, Monhegan Island and the warblers...the Maine coastline and small towns along the way. In the rare event that we run out of birds, guide Eric Hynes talks natural history and greatly enriches the experience. Your tour managers and office staff are first rate." J.P., MAINE IN FALL 2019
Other Tours in USAALASKA FALL GOLDMINE: Rarities on the Pribilofs & Ross's Gulls in Barrow
ALASKA: NO PLACE LIKE NOME
ALASKA: THE GREAT LAND
ARIZONA NIGHTBIRDS & MORE
ARIZONA WINTER SPECIALTIES
ARIZONA'S SECOND SPRING
ARIZONA: BIRDING THE BORDER
FALL FOR CAPE MAY
FLORIDA: Mangroves & Migrants
LOUISIANA: YELLOW RAILS & CRAWFISH TAILS
MICHIGAN: GREAT LAKES GRANDEUR
NEW MEXICO: Birding the Land of Enchantment
NORTHERN ARIZONA'S CANYONS & CONDOR
OREGON: From the Coast to the Cascades
PENNSYLVANIA'S WARBLERS & MORE: From Cerulean Warbler to Henslow's Sparrow
SLICE OF CALIFORNIA: Seabirds to Sierra
SOUTH TEXAS RARITIES
SPRING IN CAPE MAY
TEXAS COAST MIGRATION SPECTACLE
TEXAS'S BIG BEND & HILL COUNTRY
ITINERARIES • TOUR STATUS • DETAILS • SPACE REQUESTSITINERARIES • We issue a separate itinerary for each year, typically at least 9 months before that year's first departure. Most itineraries don't vary much year to year, but there may be small or rarely more substantive changes. A sample previous-year itinerary is usually available even if the one for your chosen departure is not. We do not require any deposit for provisional bookings until the itinerary for the departure is ready.
- 2022 sample (PDF)
- 2023 (PDF expected Feb 2023)
DEPARTURES • We have 2 departures currently scheduled through 2024, with details including limits, guides, fees, and space available listed below.
Sep 8-17, 2023
Guided by: Eric Hynes
Tour Manager: Ruth Kuhl
Tour Limit: 7
Status: Provisionally full; waitlist available - The itinerary has not been finalized for this tour. The trip has provisionally filled but, if you are interested, we can waitlist you for the trip. As we do not require deposits until the itinerary and price are finalized, we often have folks drop off a tour when the deposit is required, and so space opens up! Click below to be waitlisted for this tour with no obligation; if you are waitlisted, we will also notify you in case of an added departure of this tour.
Tour Fee: $5025
REQUEST WAITLIST OR MORE INFO
Sep 8-17, 2024
Guided by: Eric Hynes
Tour Manager: Ruth Kuhl
Tour Limit: 7
Status: Open - Space is still available on this tour, and we are accepting provisional bookings. No deposit is required until you receive the itinerary. Click below to book space.
Tour Fee: Fee TBD / 2023=$5025
REQUEST SPACE OR MORE INFO
Enjoy looking through the 3 most recent Field Guides triplists for this tour linked below!