Friday, December 8, 2017

2018 Schedule

Feb 3 (Feb 10 weather date) – 8 hour Winter Seabirds Tour 

May 19 – 6 hour Group/Newbie  Intro to Seabirds Tour

August 12 (Sunday) – Summer Seabirds Tour

August 25 – 12 hour Fall Deepwater Tour

September 1 (Tentative)  -- 5 hour Shorebird Festival Tour (Charleston)

September 15 – 8 hour Fall Seabirds Tour (inc. WINGS group)

September 29 – 8 hour Tillamook Seabirds Tour (OBA, Garibaldi)

October 7 (Sunday) – 10 hour (Perpetua Bank) Fall Seabirds Tour

October 27  – 8 hour Late Fall Seabirds Tour

December 8 – 7 hour Early Winter Tour 

All tours run from Newport, OR unless otherwise noted. 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

December 9 Pelagic Full

With a recent cruise ship report bringing reports of MOTTLED PETREL, SHORT-TAILED ALBATROSS and COOK'S PETREL,followed by a promising weather forecast, people jumped at the chance to attend our Winter Seabirds Pelagic on December 9.  This trip is now full and not accepting more passengers. 
Please look for our 2018 schedule to come out soon.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Last NW Pelagic in 2017!

Oregon Pelagic Tours is happy to take a chance on the weather, and offer a 7 hour winter pelagic out of Newport on Saturday, December. 9  We can't guarantee the weather and ocean will cooperate , in which all passengers will receive a full refund, but winter pelagics in the Pacific Northwest are infrequent enough that any intrepid birder who is a fan of seabirds should consider signing up. A similar trip in the 2012 provided views of Mottled Petrel, and although this bird is very rare, this is your best chance in 2017.  Our target birds will be Laysan Albatross, Short-tailed Shearwater (which should be seen in numbers), Ancient Murrelet and maybe Parakeet Auklet.  Hope to have you join us! 

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

September 17 Pelagic Highlights

Despite high winds, some rain, moderate swells and waves, our 8 hour pelagic made it 27 miles offshore, and saw low numbers of most expected species.  Highlights were Black-footed Albatross, Fork-tailed Storm-Petrel, Parasitic Jaeger, South Polar Skua, and the always charismatic Sabine's Gull. Ocean conditions made spotting alcids difficult, but we did have small numbers of Cassin's Auklet, Rhinoceros Auklet, and Marbled Murrelet. Animal highlights include great views of humpback whales and amazing views of the blue shark feeding in our chum slick.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

September 17, 2017 Pelagic -- Go or No Go?

For those passengers on the September 17 pelagic, we will be monitoring the weather forecasts closely between now and the pelagic.  There will be high winds, but at this point on Thursday, we don't know if they will keep us from going out.  I will speaking with the charter office, checking the weather reports every day, and sending  updates Friday, and if necessary Saturday night.  We have a number of people who would go out in any conditions to have the experience of seeing seabirds, but rest assured that we will not be leaving the dock if there are any concerns about safety! 

Shorebird Festival Pelagic -- Amazing shearwaters!

The 5 hour pelagic trip run out of Charleston aboard the Betty Kay in conjunction with the Shorebird Festival was a great success.  Highlights were one TUFTED PUFFIN, four species of shearwaters -- SOOTY, PINK-FOOTED, good numbers of the elegant BULLER'S, and two FLESH-FOOTED, one of which sat on the water, giving all passengers good views.  Throw in BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSS, NORTHERN FULMARS and FORK-TAILED STORM-PETRELS, auklets, and other seabirds, and you have the makings of an excellent trip. 

Thursday, August 24, 2017

2017 Pelagic Weekend A Go!

I am very pleased that the weather forecast for our end of August Pelagic Weekend is favorable, and both the 8 hour Fall Seabirds trip on Saturday and the 12 hour Fall Deepwater trip on Sunday are scheduled to go out.  Two days on the ocean?  What could be better?  

Friday, July 21, 2017

Looking forward to our fall season!

We are very excited to start our fall pelagic season.  All our trips still have places available, and each trip has something different to offer.
We have two 8 hour trips in August and September, generally considered the months of greatest diversity.  These trips are offered on August 26 and September 17.  We are at the peak of jaeger migration, and it is not unusual to see all four expected species of the family:  Parasitic, Long-tailed, Pomarine and South Polar Skua. We look for three species of shearwater, including the elegant Buller's.  It is a good time to see both our auklets and other alcids.  And while definitely uncommon, Laysan Albatross may be seen on any trip. 
Our 12 hour deepwater trip will look for the above species, but also offers us a chance a Scripps's Murrelet and Leach's Storm-Petrel. Our two deepwater trips in 2016 had one Hawaiian Petrel each, so we will hope to be that lucky again. This trip will take place on August 27. 
Finally, we are happy to provide a shorter 5 hour trip, especially offered for those wishing to see albatross and other ocean birds, but are not sure that they will enjoy a longer pelagic. This trip is offered as part of the Shorebird Festival in Coos Bay and Charleston. This festival is an enjoyable weekend of field trips, good speakers, and good birding.  If you have not yet been, you may wish to consider attending.  The pelagic will take place on September 2. 
Last, we will offer trips in October.  More on those later.  For prices, more information, and to register, please visit the Schedule & Prices page on this website.

Friday, June 16, 2017

September 16 8 hour trip changed to Sunday, September 17!

Our mid-September trip is when we can expect to see the greatest  diversity of seabirds.  Long-tailed Jaegers, earlier migrants than the other jaegers, are still passing through, Buller's Shearwaters are showing up in better numbers, and in general, we are enjoying good numbers of auklets, phalarope, terns, and more.  We even  have a chance to see a rare species, such as Flesh-footed Shearwater (never guaranteed, however!).  
This trip will now go out on September 17, as a nephew decided not to plan his wedding date around Oregon Pelagic Tours's schedule.  Imagine that!  All registered participants and the charter agreed to make the change, so I am able to attend the wedding on Saturday, then run a pelagic the following day.  Please note that this date has been changed on the schedule page, and is now correct.

Friday, May 26, 2017

May 20 Trip -- Albatross to Storm Petrels

Oregon Pelagic Tours successfully ran our first trip of the 2017 season, our six hour Spring Seabirds trip.  Not having run a late spring trip for several years, we had a full boat, with nearly 40 passengers and guides.  We braved a bumpy ride and spray on the way out, but saw most of the expected species during the trip, especially enjoying breeding plumage Red and Red-necked Phalaropes, a real highlight for those of us who usually see these birds in their basic plumages in the fall or winter.  We motored out to Nelson's Island, about 24 miles west of Newport, where Black-footed Albatross and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels put on a nice show at the slick, and a single Sabine's Gull paid us a short visit.  Oddly absent were any jaegers and Cassin's Auklets, and mammals were distant and in low numbers.  Still, we ended the day with happy passengers and crew, and will offer another short spring pelagic next year. 

Sunday, April 23, 2017

May 20 trip full!

We had gotten away from offering pelagic trips in the spring, as the past few had been difficult to fill. Apparently it was time to change that, or perhaps people were interested in another short trip (our typical trips are 8 to 12 hours), but in any case, I am very happy to announce that our 6 hour trip scheduled for May 6 is full.  If you are interested in a shorter pelagic, please register for the Cape Arago Shorebird Festival, and sign up for our 5 hour pelagic on Saturday, September 2nd. Other trips can be found on the Schedules page. Hope to see you on the water!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Intro to Pelagic Birding -- Coming in May!

Oregon Pelagic Tours is very happy to present a new tour in 2017.  The goal is to spot seabirds as they nest along our shores, migrate through our waters as they head north to their breeding grounds, or visit our offshore waters to feed.  This 6 hour spring tour is perfect for beginners and experienced pelagic birders alike. We will cruise to Yaquina Head to observe the seabirds breeding there, then head out to sea deep enough to observe the impressive albatross.  Come join us!

Friday, January 20, 2017

2017 Winter Pelagic cancellation

The January 28 winter pelagic did not generate sufficient registration or sign-up to go.  A number of people were apparently considering going, however within two weeks before the departure date (our normal time frame for making decisions on whether or not to go out), only one person had made their payment.  Some late interest gave us hope that the trip would go, but it was a case of too little, too late. So please, if you think you might like to go out with us, please email me with your contact information, and mail in your payment in a timely manner.  Oregon Pelagic Tours is proud to provide trips off the Oregon Coast, and hopes to be able to do so for some time to come.