A River of Gulls
Birding the Niagara River - New York and Ontario
November 30 - December 3, 2006
The Niagara River is largely regarded as the premier location in North America for observing a diversity of gull species. Fourteen species have been seen in a single day during this season. We are likely to encounter over ten of these, with Black-legged Kittiwake, Little Gull, California Gull, Thayer’s Gull, and Sabine’s Gull distinct possibilities, and “white-winged” gulls are a regular occurrence. There is no better place to study the various ages and plumages of the more common species, including a “blizzard” of Bonaparte’s Gulls. We will also observe a number of waterfowl and seabird species that associate with the river, such as Common Loon, Horned Grebe, Common Merganser, Redhead, Canvasback, Long-tailed Duck, and many more! Rare visitors like Harlequin Duck, Snowy Owl, and Bohemian Waxwing may also be present.
Day One: Arrive in the afternoon for check-in. Meet at 5:00 p.m. and proceed to dinner (included) at a nearby restaurant. This will give us all a chance to get acquainted and discuss the possibilities that the Niagara River presents.
Day Two: Meet at 8:30 a.m. to bird the river. We will visit a number of prime locations, such as the Horseshoe Falls, Goat Island, Whirlpool, and Adam Beck. After stopping for lunch mid-day, the afternoon will find us at the Lewiston Sand Docks and Fort Niagara. Dinner and the evening are on your own.
Day Three: Gather at 8:30 a.m. to explore other great birding areas along the river, such as Fort Erie and Queenston. Hamilton Harbor is also a possibility, especially if any uncommon or rare species are present. The afternoon will end at Niagara-on-the-Lake witnessing the amazing exodus of thousands of Bonaparte’s Gulls and other gulls and waterfowl to their night roost on Lake Ontario. A relaxing dinner (included) and checklist review will finish the day out right.
Day Four: Meet at 8:30 a.m. for check-out, before heading to the river for another morning of gulls, ducks, and other fall and winter birds. We will concentrate on birds we may not have seen yet, as well as further appreciation of the variation and number of gulls. At around 12:00, we will summarize our sightings and conclude the tour. You are welcome to stay and enjoy more of the Niagara Falls area on you own.
This tour includes three nights of accomodations at a hotel situated right along the Niagara River Gorge near Niagara Falls, Ontario! Rooms are furnished with either one or two beds. Dinners at two of the area’s well-known eating establishments are included (Thursday and Saturday).
Also included are professional guide services for the duration of the tour. Brett M. Ewald will be the tour leader on this exciting excursion. As well as being an accomplished birder, naturalist, and biologist, Brett is a native of the Niagara Frontier and has been enjoying the birdlife along the Niagara River for over 20 years. He looks forward to sharing the wonder and beauty of Niagara Falls and its birds with you!
Besides the remarkable birding, the overwhelming expanse of Niagara Falls will be the backdrop for part of this tour, along with the remarkable river gorge. There are also many things to do and see in the tourist cities of Niagara Falls, on both sides of the border, including shopping areas, attractions, and Casino Niagara.
Prices listed are per person, based on your level of occupancy.
Terms and Conditions
A $100.00 deposit is required at time of booking. Any balance due is required September 30, 2006. Confirmation and an informational packet, including details and directions, will be sent upon receipt of deposit. Make your check or money order payable to Lakeshore Nature Tours. If the tour is full, a waiting list will be taken, and filled according to the date of registration. A $25 service fee will apply to cancellations before September 30, 2006. Cancellations after September 30, 2006 will forfeit the entire $100.00 deposit. Transportation is the responsibility of the participant(s).
For more information, call, email or write:
12398 Platten Road
Lyndonville, NY 14098
Lyndonville, NY 14098