June has been a hectic month … hence the lack of blog updates. I have been busy leading a number of tours – private bookings and for folks like Wildland Tours and Eagle Eye Tours/Adventure Canada. The excursions have ranged from one to seven days and involved birds, bergs, whales, and even a little history! It’s nice to be making use of more than just my birding knowledge for a change!
I begin yet another week-long tour in just a few hours, so no time for a detailed post — but here are some photo highlights from the past few weeks. It has been fun!!
Icebergs have been everywhere this spring – including one we enjoyed right alongside the huge seabird colonies of Witless Bay Ecological Reserve (Wildland Tours/Adventure Canada/O’Briens Boat Tours)
The massive colonies of Common Murre in Witless Bay Ecological Reserve are always awe-inspiring!
Atlantic Puffin, Witless Bay Ecological Reserve
Common Murre, Witless Bay Ecological Reserve
Razorbills, Witless Bay Ecological Reserve
Cape Pine is the southernmost point of land in Newfoundland …
… and an excellent place to see Short-tailed Swallowtail, which has a very restricted range and is more or less an island specialty.
Nearby St. Shott’s is the island’s southernmost community, and beautifully rugged.
Following on this theme, North America’s southernmost herd of Woodland Caribou can often be seen in this area, too. These ones were near Sam’s River.
Arctic Tern have been nesting on the bach at St. Vincent’s for a number of years now, allowing for unusually close encounters with these often shy birds.
Castle Hill provides not only a great look at an important part of Newfoundland’s history, but also a fantastic view over Placentia, which was once the “French capital” of our island.
We enjoyed a visit by a pair of inquisitive Gray Jays while visiting Castle Hill.
I enjoyed some stunning evening light and scenery at the beautiful boat harbour in St. Bride’s …
… some of it a sad reminder of the struggle that these communities have had to face since the closure of the cod fishery.
The sunset at St. Bride’s was amazing.
Cape St. Mary’s and its Northern Gannets are always a crowd pleaser – and all my groups had fantastic days there, with or without the fog!
The icebergs in Bonavista & Trinity Bays were incredible – in number, size and sheer beauty. Some dramatic skies added to the scene at times.
Sometimes, a whale or two even got in the way of the iceberg viewing 😉
A visit to historic Trinity was also a highlight.
Our tour of “Cape Random” (near New Bonaventure) was fun, and included yet another iceberg right in the cove.
We also enjoyed a short visit with the Atlantic Puffins at Elliston, where the colony can be viewed comfortably from land.
A boat tour out of St. John’s harbour gives a new perspective on Cape Spear, North America’s easternmost point – this time with a rainstorm brewing in the background.
And, of course, more icebergs. There were some mammoths outside the narrows this month!
Humpback Whales have been showing up in the past two weeks, following the capelin inshore. I expect to see a lot more of them this week!