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  • Photograph of Piping Plover

    Piping Plover by Michael McKee.

    EASTERN CANADA -
    BAY OF FUNDY and
    GRAND MANAN

    Best Wildlife in Eastern Canada

    Mammals
    Northern Right, Fin, Humpback and (Northern) Minke Whales (all mostly Aug-Sep), Harbour Porpoise, and Grey and Common (Harbour) Seals. Also a chance of Atlantic White-sided Dolphin, Moose, North American Porcupine, American Beaver, Muskrat and Harp Seal.

    Birds
    Many of the species listed are passage migrants, moving through the area mainly in August and September. Great Shearwater, Bald Eagle, Blue Jay, Atlantic Puffin, Cedar Waxwing, Wood Duck and Piping Plover (mostly Apr-Aug), as well as Spruce Grouse, Sooty Shearwater, Wilson's Storm Petrel, Northern Gannet, migrating raptors (mostly Broad-winged and Red-tailed Hawks), migrating shorebirds including Hudsonian Godwit, Semipalmated Sandpiper (usually mostly early August when over 100,000 have been recorded at Mary's Point, Shepody NWA), Short-billed Dowitcher, and Grey and Red-necked Phalaropes, (Black-legged) Kittiwake, Arctic Tern, Black Guillemot, Common Nighthawk, Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Belted Kingfisher, Grey Jay, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Eastern Bluebird, migrating warblers including Northern Parula, American Redstart, Common Yellowthroat and Yellow, Magnolia, Black-throated Green, Black-and-white and Blackpoll Warblers, Northern Cardinal, Two-barred Crossbill and Nelson's Sparrow. Also a chance of Manx Shearwater, Leach's Storm Petrel, Razorbill, Pileated Woodpecker and Pine Grosbeak.

    Reptiles, Amphibians and Fish
    A chance of Basking Shark.

    Invertebrates
    Migrating Monarch butterflies.

    Other Natural Wonders of Eastern Canada

    Bay of Fundy This huge bay has one of the largest tidal ranges in the world. At the head of the bay tides may rise 16 m (53 ft) (the record is 17 m (56 ft)) and in some places in the bay recede as much as 5 km (3 miles).

    Autumn (Fall) Colours The spectacular show of leaves changing colour is usually at its best during the first half of October.

    Best Sites for Wildlife in Eastern Canada

    Best Times for Wildlife in Eastern Canada

    Most whales are usually present from mid-June to mid-October, mainly in August and September, with peak numbers and activity usually during the first half of August, the same time the numbers of Semipalmated Sandpipers usually peak. The greatest diversity of migrating birds usually occurs between mid-August and mid-September, especially mid-August in the case of shorebirds and the first half of September in the case of landbirds, notably warblers. The numbers of migrating Monarch butterflies usually peak in mid-September.

    Recommended Books etc. for Eastern Canada

    Mammals of North America by R W Kays and D E Wilson. PUP, 2009 (Second Edition).

    Mammals of North America by F A Reid. Peterson North American Field Guides, 2006 (Fourth Edition).

    Peterson Field Guide to Finding Mammals in North America by V Dinets. Houghton Mifflin, 2015.

    Field Guide to the Birds of North America edited by J Dunn and J Alderfer. NGS, 2011 (Sixth Edition).

    Kaufman Field Guide to Birds of North America by K Kaufman. Houghton Mifflin, 2005.

    The North American Bird Guide by D Sibley. Helm, 2014 (Second Edition).

    Peterson Field Guide to Birds of Eastern and Central North America by R T Peterson. Houghton Mifflin, 2010 (Sixth Edition).

    The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds by R Crossley. PUP, 2011.

    Kaufman Field Guide to Butterflies of North America by J Brock and K Kaufman. Houghton Mifflin, 2003.


    Apps etc.


    National Geographic Birds: Field Guide to North America.

    The Sibley eGuide to the Birds of North America.

    Peterson Birds of North America.

    Audubon Birds - A Field Guide to North American Birds.

    iBird Ultimate Guide to Birds.

    Trip Reports for Eastern Canada

    Many trip reports, some for Eastern Canada, are posted on the websites listed here. On some of these websites some reports are independent and some are posted by tour companies who organize tours to Eastern Canada. These tour companies and others also post their own reports on their websites, which are listed under 'Some Organized Tours to Eastern Canada' below.

    Local Guides and Tours in Eastern Canada

    The costs of organized tours partly reflect the quality of the tour leaders. Some leaders are certainly better than others and many companies claim their leaders are the best but even the best rely at least to some extent on the exceptional skills of the local guides they employ. If you are travelling independently, employing such local guides will greatly increase your chances of seeing the wildlife you wish to see.

    Accommodation in Eastern Canada

    Some Organized Tours to Eastern Canada

    There are many tour companies who organize tours to see mammals, birds, other wildlife and other natural wonders. The cost of these tours vary considerably according to such variables as the airlines used, the number of days the tours last, the number of sites visited, the number of people in the group (an important consideration if you wish to see such wildlife as rainforest mammals and birds), the number of tour leaders, the standard of accommodation and transport, and the percentage profit the company hopes to make. Generally, where the number of days tours last and the number of sites visited are similar, the cheapest tours are those that use the cheapest airlines, accommodation and local transport, that have the largest groups with the least number of leaders, and that make the least amount of profit. The most expensive tours tend to be those which are exceptionally long, use the most expensive accommodation (ridiculously lavish in some cases, even for single nights) and which make the most profit. Some tour costs partly reflect the quality of the tour leaders. Some leaders are certainly better than others and many companies claim their leaders are the best but even the best rely at least to some extent on the exceptional skills of the local guides they employ.

    While tour companies organize tours with set itineraries many also organize custom tours for individuals and private groups who instead of taking a tour with a set itinerary want to follow their own itinerary to suit their own personal tastes, whether it be mammals, birds, other wildlife, other natural wonders or even man-made attractions, or a mixture of them all. Many organized tours with set itineraries are also fast-paced and target as many species as possible, whether they are mammals, birds or other wildlife or everything, which usually leaves little time to enjoy the best sites and individual species, but on a custom tour those taking part can specify the pace and the sites and species they wish to concentrate on. Custom tours also suit people who like to travel with people they already know, rather than with a group of strangers, and people with partners with different interests. Individuals and small groups will almost certainly have to pay more than the price of an organized tour with a set itinerary but a large group of friends may be able to travel for less than the price quoted for a set tour.

    Tour companies who run organized tours or can arrange custom tours to Eastern Canada include the following.