The United States offers fantastic birding and wildlife viewing in a huge variety of habitats, from deserts to mountains to coastlines and beyond. It’s no coincidence that all of our birding destinations in the US have comfortable climates, as we acknowledge the urge for Canadian “snowbirds” to flee the northern winter and slushy springtime. However, birders from all over the world are honing in on the US as a reliable destination for exciting birds in a comfortable setting with unique culture, great food and really interesting roadside billboards!
Island-hopping in Hawaii is not a bad way to explore the tropical side of the United States. Exciting endemics are the rule here, and we can see ‘Elepaio, Omoa, and honeycreepers including Palila, ‘Anianiau, ‘Akepa, ‘I’iwi and ‘Akiapola’au. The landscapes of Kaua’I, Oahu and the Big Island will create great photos and memories. A laid-back vibe is the norm here.
Arizona, Texas, and Florida are similar destinations in that they are warm, inviting, and offer birds that are not frequently encountered in the north. They are also the first arrival point for spring migrants and the wintering grounds for northern species. Each offers an extensive list of specialized birds found in varied habitats and our guides know how to find them. Anyone who’s visited High Island in early spring can attest to the excitement of viewing a flock of Painted Buntings and a forest full of equally bright warbler and tanager species. Often, we experience a “fallout” of birds after they have flown eighteen hours over the Gulf of Mexico. In the Texas hill country we can find Golden-cheeked Warbler, Red-cockaded Woodpecker and Black-capped Vireo, all with limited breeding ranges. On our Arizona tour we’ll search for more limited-range species such as Red-faced Warbler, Montezuma Quail, Arizona Woodpecker, several species of thrasher. Elegant Trogon seems out of place but they’re here! Indeed, Arizona is so good it requires more than one trip and we offer separate spring and winter trips. Over in Florida, guests will never forget the waterbirds and seabirds found on Sanibel Island or the Dry Tortugas. Bachman’s Sparrow, Brown-headed Nuthatch and other species can be found in pine forests further north, and these can also be found on our shorter North Carolina tour, where we add two days of exciting pelagic birding on a comfortable boat looking for surprises offshore. Whales, shearwaters, terns and petrels are the norm but we also find boobies, skuas and tropicbirds! On land, we hunt for difficult-to-find birds such as Swainson’s Warbler and Chuck-wills Widow, among others.
California’s Sierra Nevada and Colorado’s Rocky Mountains are bucket-list destinations for visitors from around the world. Birding-wise, we know where to find all of the avian treasures hidden within the various valleys and foothills of these mountainous states, including warblers and woodpeckers in the must-see Yosemite Valley and Pinyon Jay and Gambel’s Quail in Colorado National Monument. We provide an unforgettable ride off California’s coast for pelagic birds, and an cruisy circuit on Colorado’s plateau to find six species of grouse, including Gunnison’s Sage Grouse! Condors, Rosy Finches, and bluebirds are only some of the mountain species found on these tours, and there are even more species in the valleys! Indeed, photographers will need enough memory cards to make it through either of these impressively birdy and scenic western states.
Come explore with us the best of what the United States has to offer!