St. Paul Island Seabirds

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Mark Romano

Dates:  Wednesday–Friday, 19–21 June; Friday–Sunday, 21–23 June; or Sunday–Wednesday, 30 June–3 July; other options available through tour operator

Start and end times: TBA, dependent on flight schedules

Cost: No AOS registration fee. Trips arranged independently with tour operator by participants. Trip costs below include food, lodging, guiding services, and round-trip airfare from Anchorage. All trips receive 25% discount if booked before 1 January.

  • Trip a: 6/19–6/21, $2,495 minus 25% discount before 1 January
  • Trip b: 6/21–6/23, $2,495 minus 25% discount before 1 January
  • Trip c: 6/30–7/3: $2,745 minus 25% discount before 1 January

Maximum participants: no limit

Meals: Meals and accommodations included at the King Eider Hotel.

Trip Leader(s): Organized and run by St. Paul Island Tour, https://stpaulislandtour.com/. To arrange individual or group bookings, please call 877-424-5637 and leave a message.

Trip Description: The Pribilof Islands in the Bering Sea are home to some of the most diverse and spectacular seabird nesting colonies in North America. Approximately 200,000 birds breed on St. Paul, mostly on the cliffs that surround much of the island. A major attraction is breeding alcids, including Common and Thick-billed Murres, Parakeet, Crested, and Least Auklets; and Horned and Tufted Puffins. St. Paul is also perhaps the easiest place in the world to view Red-legged Kittiwakes. Breeding shorebirds on the island include Rock Sandpiper and Red-necked Phalarope. Sea ducks in the area include King Eider and Harlequin and Long-tailed Ducks. Breeding songbirds are few, but (Pribilof) Gray-crowned Rosy Finches, Lapland Longspurs, and Snow Buntings are common. The time surrounding the conference is suboptimal for Asian vagrants and they are not a focus of these trips, but if any are around we would certainly look for them. In addition to birds, St. Paul features Northern Fur Seals, Arctic Fox, spectacular wildflowers, and an historic Russian Orthodox church.

Likely species: King Eider, Harlequin Duck, Long-tailed Duck, Black-legged and Red-legged Kittiwakes, Northern Fulmar, Common and Thick-billed Murres, Parakeet, Crested, and Least Auklets; Horned and Tufted Puffins, Rock Sandpiper, Red-necked Phalarope, Red-faced Cormorant, Pacific Wren, (Pribilof) Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, Lapland Longspur, Snow Bunting

Recommended Gear and Cautions: Weather in the Pribilofs is notoriously variable. Participants should prepare for a variety of poor weather conditions. Participants should also consider giving contingency time on the back end of the tour ahead of the meeting to account for any potential weather delays getting back to Anchorage.

The standard recommendation is that participants arrive in Anchorage one day prior to scheduled departure, and allow one or preferably two days on your return to Anchorage to make connecting flights. Weather conditions are variable and may result in overnight delay for return.

Additional Information: Prices listed here include airfare from Anchorage; see St. Paul Island Tour’s website for more information. The 25% discount offer for AOS attendees is good for any 2019 St. Paul Island Tour if booked before Jan 1st; the dates listed here are simply the closest available to the conference. To arrange individual or group bookings, please call 877-424-5637 and leave a message.

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