Puffin Trip in Maine

10,000 Birds

When Daisy started talking about a family trip to Maine for the long Memorial Day Weekend I had one thing on my mind: puffins! Atlantic Puffins are easier to see, and see well, in Maine than anywhere else in the United States. For nearly a hundred years, after the eggers, meat-hunters, plume-hunters, and a human-influenced gull population boom, puffins were absent from the island. I spotted two puffins on the way out though they were distant and took off before we got close.

Are Atlantic Puffins in Trouble?

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” Alan Tilmouth reported in these pages a few months ago that due to extreme weather conditions, Atlantic Puffins and other seabirds were washing up on the shores of Great Britain. That is, warmer oceans are changing fish populations, with butterfish beginning to supplant the herring that Puffins usually feed their young. Food instability also appears to be driving down the weight of adult Puffins, and delaying their breeding. Conservation puffins

Review: The Puffin by Mike P Harris and Sarah Wanless

10,000 Birds

Puffins! The Atlantic Puffin is one of the most charismatic of auks. I’m pretty sure that the only way that anyone could dislike Atlantic Puffins is in some kind of ironic way… but no, with its bright beak and earnestness, the puffin is also well-placed for hipster love, so they have that covered. If you meet someone who claims to dislike puffins, you should check in case that person is an evil robot. If you want to know about puffins, oh you will.

It’s Nestcam Season—Take Your Pick and Take a Peek!

10,000 Birds

And, of course, no list of bird cams would be complete without Audubon’s Puffin Loafing Ledge. Okay, so the Puffins aren’t back yet … but you won’t want to miss them when they return!). News Bald Eagle hummingbirds nesting birds Ospreys pacific great blue herons Peregrine Falcon puffins webcamIn the Northern Hemisphere, at least, spring has sprung. Which means spring fever. Which, in the bird world, means babies. And who doesn’t love cute baby birds?

2016 53

Birding Protection Island, Washington

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I love puffins. Before my trip to Washington the only species of puffin I had ever seen in the wild was the puffin of the Atlantic Ocean, the appropriately named Atlantic Puffin. I had high hopes, however, of adding Tufted Puffin to my life list provided I could overcome a series of seemingly insurmountable obstacles to accomplish this near impossible goal. You know, so we could see some really cool puffins?&# As the cry of “Puffin!&#

Good News for UK Birds (and Birders)

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feeding ground for Arctic , Common , and Roseate Terns , as well as the #2 site for Sandwich Terns and the third-most important site for Atlantic Puffins. ” News Arctic Tern Atlantic Puffin Common Tern Conservation England Great Britain Natural England Roseate Tern Sandwich Tern United KingdomSome of Great Britain’s most cherished seabirds just got an added layer of protection.

2017 40

Slow Start to Spring

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One of our best-loved and most photogenic seabirds the Atlantic Puffin was the main victim, presumably starving as food was driven into deep water to avoid the turbulent waves higher in the seas. Dead Gannet (above) and Atlantic Puffin(below). Birding Birdtrack Britain migration puffins spring March is the month when everything generally bursts into life, migrants start arriving and by the end of the month everything in the British garden is looking rosy.

2013 70

Redganner Has Two Great Posts Up

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Do you like puffins, fulmars, and seals? Go check out these two awesome posts about visiting Skomer, an island off the coast of Wales. Of course you do. Go now! Asides

Taking Time to #SketchWithSibley

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David Sibley’s sketch of an Atlantic Puffin. As soon as the video ended, I started another, this time for Atlantic Puffins.

2020 77

Calling All Birders: Come To Hog Island!

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The first time I saw a puffin, it was a revelation. Soon after our late afternoon arrival we met up with my friend Pete Salmonsohn, Education Coordinator for Audubon’s Project Puffin , who hustled us into a van for a 20-minute drive to New Harbor. But just for a second, I became a heretic: wasn’t there an injured puffin around somewhere, I thought hopefully, who needed my help?

2014 86

Birding the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve in Newfoundland

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I knew that the east coast of Newfoundland would charm me with its hundreds of thousands of Atlantic Puffins – since it is, after all, home to the largest Puffin colony in North America – but I had no idea that the gulls would be the ones to leave a lasting mark on me. When it wasn’t raining, we spent much of our afternoons on deck, mesmerized by the dozens of puffins scurrying about restlessly, flapping their wings furiously just above the water. Happy puffins.

2013 74

Peterson Reference Guide to Bird Behavior, by John Kricher — a review

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As he says, this requires a “muscular cloaca,” such as the one the Puffin, below, is showing off; perhaps that photograph is an appropriate way to end this review: __.

2020 87

The left-overs. 10 birds that didn’t make it onto the blog.


Crested Puffin (California, USA). The week between Christmas and New Year is always a good time to reflect on the year that just was. Amongst the highlights that featured in published posts, we find the drafts that never quite got finished, or didn’t have enough photographic support to appear on the world wide web. The left-overs. Black-crested Bulbul (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia).

2017 61

Best Bird of the Weekend (First of August 2011)

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Tufted Puffins foraging off Protection Island on a boat trip from Port Townsend, WA? Puffins!!! Have you used August as an excuse or incentive to travel? I highly recommend it, but then again I always advocate travel, no matter the month! Would you believe my best bird of the weekend was a Screaming Piha ? Believe it, and in the ABA area no less. I took my kids on a fun whirlwind tour of Washington D.C. but my best bird of the weekend was in Baltimore, specifically the Aquarium.

2011 66

Quoth the Ravens: We’re Ready for Our Close-up

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There are hawk cams , falcon cams , puffin cams , tern cams , heron cams , and even Osprey cams. You’ve probably heard of many different kinds of bird cams—web feeds that spy on the inner lives of birds. Now you can add another one to the list: the Ravencam, in the unlikeliest of places—the campus of Wellesley College , just outside of Boston, Massachusetts. Common Ravens tend to avoid nesting around lots of humans. But clearly, this pair was looking for attention.

2014 78

Best Bird of the Weekend (Last of May 2017)

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Corey’s Best Bird of the Weekend was any of the five Atlantic Puffins he saw on Eastern Egg Rock off the coast of Maine. This Memorial Day weekend may still be rolling for Americans, but even the standard two-day array can hold a lot of excitement this time of year. This is a precious time of year, so make every moment count. I was pleased to discover that Hooded Warblers can be found consistently at my mother-in-law’s home, but they weren’t my best bird.

2017 50

All about alcids: Extravagant divers of northern oceans

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Across the world’s northern oceans, 24 species of auklets, murres, puffins, guillemots, and related seabirds make a living catching food beneath the waves and breeding, often in large colonies, on coastlines and islands. Atlantic Puffins ( Fratercula arctica ), Witless Bay, Newfoundland © David J.

2014 87

Notable Mentions: Digiscoper of the Year 2011

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My colleague Michaela absolutely loves Puffins and so I could not resist including this photo of a full-frontal puffin. A little while after the whole excitement of choosing and announcing the winners of the Digiscoper of the Year competition is over, I try to take a bit of a step back and have another look through the thousands of entries in the competition, and pick a few images that were not amongst the winning images, but that really stand out to me for one reason of the other.

2011 79

Jumping out of my “Beat” today

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The number one bird on my list was the iconic Horned Puffin. Horned Puffin. Let me start off with being quite clear, there are no grizzly Bears on the Baja! I am actually jumping out of my assigned beat area, to share some photos from my trip to Kodiak Island Alaska.

2016 54

Birds and Us: A 12,000 Year History from Cave Art to Conservation–A Book Review

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Tim Birkhead loves to tell stories.

Nest Cam Welcomes Arctic Tern Babies to the World

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If Arctic Tern chicks aren’t your thing (and if they’re not, by golly, you’re missing out on an awful lot of cuteness), explore.org also boasts webcams for Atlantic Puffins , Osprey , Common Terns , Great Horned Owls , Long-eared Owls , and Magellanic Penguins. You may already know how awesome Arctic Terns are. Clocking more than 50,000 miles per year, the birds appear to have cornered the market on the world’s longest annual migration.

2013 77

Week 21: Our last week in Scotland

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At Dunnet Head, we got to see a couple of Atlantic Puffins, a few Razorbills, some Guillemots and gulls. Hundreds of Black-headed Gulls, Greater Black-backed Gulls , Mew Gulls , and Fulmars , thousands of Razorbills , 60-70 Puffins , and literally tens of thousands of Guillemots. While there were way less Puffins than any of the other species, they are still so much fun to see.

2018 40

The Art of Bird Camp

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On our first morning after breakfast, my group and the teens piled onto a boat and headed out to Eastern Egg Rock, once again the breeding ground for Atlantic Puffins (as well as a host of other seabirds) thanks to biologist Dr. Stephen Kress. Puffins growl like chainsaws, and one in Britain was seen carrying 62 fish in her beak. I have been working in the avian world for 25 years, but last summer I was out-birded by a 14-year-old girl.

2015 87

My eBird 10th Anniversary

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For me, there was the Limpkin in Loxahatchee NWR in Florida, the Atlantic Puffin at Petit Manan NWR in Maine, the Falcated Duck at Colusa NWR in California. According to eBird , I have been an eBirder since December 23, 2009, so today is my 10th eBird anniversary.

2019 77

This Week in Bird News: Junk Food Junkies, Snacks on a String, and More

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This Bald Eagle, photographed by Corey, was after Blue-winged Teal in Florida, not Atlantic Puffins in Maine. Look out below! But still. Did you miss your chance to see Angry Birds in movie theaters? Fear not—the film has just been released on DVD. (In In the U.S., at least—international markets, you’ll have to wait a bit longer.) Probably not a good sign that it showed up in my local supermarket’s discount rack. But there’s plenty of better—or at least more interesting—news for birders.

2016 43

The Wonderfulness of Local Field Guides: Reviews of ABA Field Guide to Birds of Maine & Birding Guide to the Greater Pasadena Area

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There is no place that compares to Maine with its rocky shorelines, freezing waters populated by wintering alcids, offshore islands filled with nesting Atlantic Puffins, mixed and boreal forests (the most forested state in the U.S.,

Reviewing 2011 – My Year in Birds

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The Tufted Puffins at Protection Island in Washington State. Any puffin is awesome and Tufted Puffin is especially awesome! Two-thousand-and-eleven was a pretty darn good year for me, birding-wise. Sure, I didn’t leave the United States but my first trip to the Pacific Northwest allowed me to see lots of new birds and spending the beginning of the year in southern California didn’t hurt the ol’ year list either.

2011 74

Wrapping up a very good 2016

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2 Horned Puffin – Fratercula corniculata On my trip to Alaska, and the beautiful island of Kodiak to photograph the grizzly bears, my one wish was to track down and photograph the Puffins. There were 17 new birds that week, but the Horned Puffins remain my favorite. #1 As the year begins to wind down, I have taken to a bit of reminiscing. From a professional stand point, this has been an outstanding twelve months.

2016 40

Retiring to Wellington

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This became particularly true when a pair, Puffin and T2, where moved to the Karori Wildlife Sanctuary , or Zealandia, in Wellington. Seeing one of the world’s rarest birds is not something you’d usually think an easy task. Species with a world population in the hundreds tend to be endangered or critically endangered and confined to remote and difficult to reach locations.

2011 75

How Birds Evolve: What Science Reveals about Their Origin, Lives, and Diversity: A Book Review by a Non-Science Person

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Doug Futuyma believes in science and in the scientific basis of evolution. This shouldn’t have to be stated, especially in a book on bird evolution by an evolutionary biologist with a Ph.D. in zoology, but these are crazy times and it’s probably good to set up expectations.

Collaborative list – June 2021

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Flaming June is busting out all over. Insects were held back by weird spring weather, but now the warmth returns and the birds are feasting on the late stirring bugs. June saw 8 beats get their birding boots on and share 90 checklists for your pleasure.

Birding Iceland on the Fly

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The hotel owner told us that visiting them in the evening had the best showing of puffins as they returned to the cliffs from the sea. Thankfully the Puffins and Razorbills (arguably the most photogenic species) perch on the uppermost ledges, making them readily available for close-ups. We got great views of Atlantic Puffin , Common Murre ( Common Guillemot ), Thick-billed Murre ( Brünnich’s Guillemot ), and Black-legged Kittiwake.

Don’t Go On Pelagic Trips. Ever.

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Tufted Puffin. Can Mr. X really tell a Tufted Puffin from a Rhinocerous Auklet ? Red-tailed Tropicbird. “This clumsy, ungraceful bird was displeasing to observe” – Carol F. Pelagic trips. There is nothing in birding like a pelagic…you never know what to expect. You can end up basking in a rare bird bliss that may linger for weeks, or you basically experience a living hell.

2011 80

Birding Without Borders: A Review

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Even on a previously scheduled rest stop at his home in Oregon, he can’t resist going birding with friends ( Tufted Puffin , a clumsy flyer but an elegant swimmer, #2701). BIRDING WITHOUT BORDERS: An Obsession, a Quest, and the Biggest Year in the World. By Noah Strycker. Houghton Mifflin, 352 pp., $27. ISBN 978-0-544-55814-4. The most impressive photograph in Noah Strycker’s new book is not one of a bird, but of the author.

2017 63

Can’t go birding? Knit them yourself!

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Instantly falling in love with Fijalkowska’s account, I went gah-gah for her patterns of a cockatiel, a puffin, a robin, and so much more. I haven’t had much time to bird. After looking for different species every day for the first six months of the year, lately I can’t manage to actively search for any kind of bird unless I’m traveling. The usual excuses apply: I’ve been sick, tired, busy with work, etc., but it still sucks.

2018 52

Great Grassland Birds at Shawangunk Grasslands National Wildlife Refuge

10,000 Birds

I had really wanted to get to the grasslands but life (and puffins ) had forced me to wait. This past Saturday, 10 June, I had to be at a meeting near Newburgh at 11 AM. Newburgh is a little over an hour north of New York City so I figured I could get a visit in to a few great locations for breeding birds that I hadn’t yet seen this year.

2017 61

Wildlife Rehabilitator Slang

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Maureen Eiger categorizes any unidentifiable featherless nestlings as “ Tufted Puffins ;” to Letitia Labbie, they’re “Eggs With Legs.”. Slang, code, and abbreviations: linguistic shorthand which can make speakers (and writers) incomprehensible to those outside their own group. To civilians who may have been puzzled by the wildlife crowd’s tossed-off references to peefas, modos or mice cubes, here is a beginner’s guide to Rehabberspeak. BIRD ID.

Gone Birding: When Nerds Collide

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card, a sort of little hand grenade decorated with an adorable puffin. One of the great compulsions shared by nearly all varieties of nerd is the desire to share the objects of our obsession with people. Unfortunately, for birders as for most others on the geek/dork spectrum, sharing the hobby we love with people can go horribly awry.To

2012 75

What It’s Like to Be a Bird: A Review of the New Sibley Book

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The emphasis is on everyday birds seen in North America, though some of the more exotic and local species are thrown in for the color and romance of it all–Atlantic Puffin, Roseate Spoonbill, the poor extinct Heath Hen.

2020 87

Birding by Volunteering

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There is no feeling in the world like knowing your helping something you care about, whether its sharks or puffins, protecting forests or reefs, advancing science or communities. Well, it’s official. Over a decade since I was last there, I am finally heading back to Africa late this year. Not forever mind, I’ll still be living here in New Zealand and carrying on as its beat writer here (I may even write about New Zealand again some time).

2014 67

Birding California: A Regional Primer

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On the coast Leach’s Storm-Petrels and Tufted Puffins nest on a few select seastacks, and in winter Harlequin Ducks and Rock Sandpipers can be reliably found in a couple of spots. Buller’s and Flesh-footed Shearwater , Ashy and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels, Tufted Puffin, Marbled Murrelet (Half Moon Bay) are easier to find in northern California than in the south. When one thinks of taking a birdcation somewhere in the U.S.,

Bird Books for Children: From Colors & Shapes to Discovering Central Park

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She’s chosen some of Harper’s most iconic images for Count the Birds –his beloved Cardinals, Barn Owls, and Puffins, as well as buntings, pelicans, grosbeaks, finches, bluebirds, quail, and turnstones, and though she does not give the birds complete names (I really would like those grosbeaks to be named Evening Grosbeaks), it’s a fun book to look at and read. It’s never too late or too early to buy a children’s book about birds.

2019 67

Mastering Bird Photography: A Book Review by an Amateur Bird Photographer

10,000 Birds

And, not every photograph is perfect; in some cases, Read presents several versions of a specific bird to show how what happens when you use, say, a shallow depth of field, like in the two puffin photos below. The full title of this exceptional book by Marie Read is Mastering Bird Photography: The Art, Craft, and Technique of Photographing Birds and Their Behavior.

2019 67