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Sep 23, 2018







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Pelagic Wildlife with New Hampshire Audubon

Introductory presentation 
Where: Massabesic Audubon Center, 26 Audubon Way, Auburn
When: Saturday, May 28, 3 to 4 p.m.
Cost: $5; free for those already registered for the trip 
 
Pelagic Wildlife Trip 
Where: Granite State Whale Watch, 1870 Ocean Blvd., Rye
When: Monday, May 30, check-in at 7:30 a.m., departure at 8 a.m., return to shore around 5 p.m. 
Cost: $70 for NH Audubon members, $90 for non-members
 
For more information on either of these events, visit nhaudubon.org.




Much to see on the sea
Seacoast boat trip focuses on pelagic wildlife

05/26/16
By Angie Sykeny asykeny@hippopress.com



Laughing gulls, humpback whales and dolphins are just some of the creatures you may see at the Pelagic Wildlife Trip hosted by New Hampshire Audubon this Memorial Day Monday, May 30. Spend the day aboard Granite State Whale Watch’s MV Granite State, exploring Jeffrey’s Ledge 20 miles off the coast in search of pelagic birds and other sea-dwelling wildlife.

“A pelagic bird is a bird that spends most of its life over the open water,” said Jon Woolf, Massabesic Audubon Center volunteer and trip organizer. “[It comes] to land only to nest and raise its young … otherwise they stay out at sea, so if you’re a dedicated birder and you want to see pelagic birds, you have to go to them.”
The group will launch from the Rye Harbor dock at 8 a.m. and return around 5 p.m. Master birder Steve Mirick will guide the trip, identifying wildlife and giving an ongoing commentary via the boat’s PA system.
Participants will likely see common birds like laughing gulls, northern gannets, several species of shearwaters, Wilson’s storm petrel, and northern fulmar. However, some rarer birds have been seen on past trips, including long-tailed and pomarine jaegers, Sabine’s gulls, red and red-necked phalaropes, Leach’s storm petrels and Atlantic puffins.
While the focus of the trip is pelagic birds, some time will also be dedicated to whales, dolphins, sharks and any other wildlife that presents itself.
“On one trip we spent a good 20 minutes with the engines shut down, drifting, while a curious humpback whale swam within yards of the boat.” Woolf said. “Birds and whales are looking for the same thing — small fish to eat — so where you find one, you often also find the other.”
The trip was first held in September 2008 and has since become a biannual tradition, taking place every spring and fall. Woolf proposed the idea to the Massabesic Audubon Center after noticing that all of New England’s pelagic birding trips were based in southern Massachusetts, “a long way to go for New Hampshire birders,” he said.
“So I suggested a [trip] into the central Gulf of Maine… to give New Hampshire birders access to a locally based pelagic birding program and get some solid information on pelagic bird populations in and around Jeffrey’s Ledge,” he said.
If you want to learn more about the trip or about pelagic wildlife in general, Woolf is giving an Intro to Pelagic Wildlife slideshow presentation at the Massabesic Audubon Center on Saturday, May 28, at 3 p.m., two days before the trip. The presentation will cover the bird and whale species most commonly seen on the trip, including photos and videos to give people who are planning on attending a visual of what they’ll be looking for.





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