For those arriving early or staying late
ABF is proud to offer
pre-fest and post-fest trips for those who wish to extend their birding
Monhegan Island Trip
May 31 (Wed) 6:30am - 5:30pm (starts and ends at The Monhegan Boat Line dock in Port Clyde)
This pre-festival trip starts at the Monhegan Boat Line dock in Port Clyde where we board the boat to Monhegan Island. Twelve miles offshore, scenic Monhegan Island has long been recognized as a migrant trap where anything might turn up, even species that you won't see anywhere else in Maine! (Summer Tanager, Lark Sparrow, Blue Grosbeak, and Dickcissel are all "regulars.") While much of the island is forested conservation land laced with trails, the best birding is often in the tiny village, where old apple trees and spruce stands serve as the backdrop for warblers (20+ species is average) and a wide diversity of other songbirds as they pass through. Atlantic Puffin and other seabirds are possibilities on the boat trip out and back! This outing is all on foot (2-3 miles) over easy to moderate trails and dirt roads, with some uneven and
Participants should bring binoculars, snacks, lunch, beverages, bug repellent, sunscreen, and good hiking/walking shoes. Dress in layers as it could be cold (especially on the ferry!). There will be some opportunities to stop for food and refreshments at a few places on the island. Keep in mind that the group will not have any place to stash extra items, so be sure to bring a backpack or the equivalent to carry extra clothing or food (if you bring you own).
The group will meet at the Port Clyde ferry
dock at 6:30am in time to catch the 7:00am ferry. The return
trip will be on the 4:30pm ferry from Monhegan. If you live far away,
we recommend that you spend the night near Port Clyde so you can easily
meet the group. Port Clyde is over 2 hours from Festival Center.
The price for the trip covers the ferry cost. Please do not purchase your own ticket.
Fee is $125/person. Limit 30 participants.
Saddleback Mountain in search of Bicknell's Thrush
May 31(Wednesday) 7am-2pm
This is a day trip at Saddleback Mountain. Bicknell’s Thrush unique breeding ecology above 3000 feet requires a steady climb to the barren bald peaks of Saddleback Mountain tucked away in the western mountains of Maine. Many northern specialty birds will be found among the rocky summit heaths and boreal krummholz ecosystems of the Rangeley Lakes region, offering opportunities for a variety of hard to find boreal species like Gray Jays, Spruce Grouse and Black-backed Woodpecker. We will study bird communication and ecology of the spruce and fir forest and dwarf shrub summits where Nashville and Blackpoll Warblers, Swainson’s Thrush and Blue-headed Vireo are calling from the spruce zone.
Participants should bring snacks, lunch, beverages,
bug repellent and sunscreen. Dress in layers as it could be cold.
The trip starts and ends at Saddleback Mountain (approximately 3.5
hours from MDI), so we recommend you find a motel closer
to the mountain the night before the trip. There are
several lodging oportunities in Rangeley, only 15 minutes from the
Tour guides are Michael Good, Dotty Doherty, and Jonathan Doherty. This day trip requires 2-3 miles of hiking on steep ski slopes of uneven terrain with rocks and roots (some hiking up slope but mostly down the slopes with a drop in elevation of 2000ft). This trip is only for those in very good physical walking shape (walking sticks helpful). The group will be taken up the mountain in ATVs, but descent will be by foot. Participants should bring binoculars, snacks, lunch, beverages, bug repellent, sunscreen, and good hiking/walking shoes. Dress in layers as it could be cold.
Fee is $90/person. Limit 10 participants.