Fall Bird Migration Cruises Start in October

The Port Townsend Marine Science Center (PTMSC) invites you to come and view the fall bird migration aboard Puget Sound Express’ Glacier Spirit, a comfortably enclosed motor yacht, beginning Saturday, October 3rd. The three-hour trips are scheduled from 1 – 4 p.m. on October 3rd, 10th, November 28th and December 31st departing from Point Hudson Marina in downtown Port Townsend.

“We see lots of birds!” said Johanna King, naturalist and cruise host for the PTMSC. “Every cruise brings a surprise or two, such as the brown booby we saw one El Nino year—and never saw again. We are lucky to see several species of alcids, such as Pigeon Guillemots and Common Murres, and sometimes Ancient and Marbled Murrelets—they’re a challenge to identify in their winter plumage. The cruises are a nice treat for anyone wanting to improve their gull identification skills, or to just enjoy an afternoon on the water!”

The PTMSC invites you to take one of the fall migration cruises around Protection Island and Rat Island this fall. Protection Island, at the mouth of Discovery Bay, is a National Wildlife Refuge, and many birds take advantage of the good habitat and abundant feeding opportunities to recover from nesting in the Arctic or on inland lakes and rivers.

Since 1994, when the PTMSC started collaborating with Puget Sound Express, guests have been enjoying this great opportunity right in our own back yard. The cruises not only feature a comfortable boat, but also expert onboard commentary and the chance to better understand our local environment.

Tickets are $55 per person ($50 for members of the PTMSC, Burke Museum, Audubon members or the Washington Ornithological Society). On-board refreshments are available. For reservations, please call the Port Townsend Marine Science Center at 360.385.5582 ext. 104 or 800.566.3932 or e-mail at cruises@ptmsc.org for additional information.

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