USA Birding Tours

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From sea to shining sea, the United States of America offers an incredible diversity of habitats and bird species, the dream of any bird watcher. From the Eastern Seaboard across the rolling Appalachian Mountains across the wide-open plains of the Midwest into the towering Rockies and across the arid desert-like western areas – the continent of North America offers a very wide range of habitats to explore. The USA is set up with a fantastic system of national parks, national wildlife refuges, state parks, national forests, and even local parks that birds and birders take advantage of. This great diversity offers amazing birding in all seasons, so there is never a bad time to visit. Read on for a quick trip throughout the United States.

Starting in winter, come with us as we visit the snow-covered boreal forest and mighty Lake Superior in Minnesota. Here we search for many birds of prey and other boreal specialties that make the quiet forest their winter home, like Great Grey Owl, Snowy Owl, Northern Hawk-Owl, Evening Grosbeak, and more. Just don’t forget your coat! From the snow of the north we make our way to South Texas in March to catch a great combination of resident specialties, early stages of migration, and wintering species like the endangered Whooping Crane. April and May welcome a spectacular influx of migratory birds starting their journeys from the Neotropics to their northern breeding grounds. Florida is the first stop on their tiring expedition, and some species do not make it much further, like Grey Kingbird and Black-whiskered Vireo. The pristine beaches, swamps, and marshes of the Everglades and a trip down the Florida Keys and to Dry Tortugas National Park provide an impressive array of seabirds, waders, and migrants. Of course, the colorful and bright wood warblers are unforgettable, so we head to the shores of Lake Erie in Ohio. This tour offers the amazing opportunity to score all 37 species of eastern warblers, such as Blackburnian, Bay-breasted, Cerulean, Kirtland’s, and Golden-winged Warblers. It is no wonder that the largest bird festival in the world is hosted here annually as migratory birds flood the Midwest in May.

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The summer months focus on the northern US with species finally arriving at their breeding territories. The coasts and marshes of Maine feature some fantastic breeders like Atlantic Puffin and Saltmarsh Sparrow. Some 4000+ miles from Maine bring us to the vast and beautiful expanses of the tundra in Alaska. The majestic beauty and peacefulness here are second to none and play host to many amazing breeding specialties as well as incredible mammals. Bristle-thighed Curlew, Bluethroat, Emperor Goose, and Grizzly Bear are just a few of the amazing targets and highlights. Moving into late summer and early fall, Southeast Arizona begins its monsoon season, turning the once barren desert and scrubland landscape into a luscious green teeming with flowers. In the hummingbird capital of the US, with up to 15 species, the feeding stations and birding trails come to life with nesting activity. Rivoli’s, Lucifer, and Violet-crowned Hummingbird are only a few of the long list of species on display in Arizona. Fall migration is now underway, and there is no better place than California. This massive state offers an incredible number of habitats with coastal marshes, redwood forests, expansive grasslands, mountains, and even an incredible display on pelagics. Catching resident specialties mixed in with western fall migrants makes for some truly epic birding. Black-footed Albatross, White-headed Woodpecker, Mountain Bluebird, and California Condor are just a small taste of what this amazing state has on offer. The end of fall brings us back to winter, and we start the amazing journey across the United States all over again.

North America is one of the most scenically spectacular continents, and it is also teaming with wildlife in addition to birds: moose, elk, bears, mountain goats, and so much more. Join us in exploring this rich wilderness!

Looking for day tours in USA? Visit our USA Day Tours page.

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Testimonials from our USA birding tours

“Maine is beautiful, whether you’re on the shore or inland, and this tour showed us the best of both. Experiencing the variety of habitats with a knowledgeable guide and great companions was just what we needed after a year of not travelling. Jacob was a great leader for our group, making sure we saw the birds we wanted, but also on the look-out for mammals or letting us slow down to enjoy the wildflowers.”

Tracy

“Jacob is an excellent birder and has great people skills. Both are needed in a good guide. He knew his stuff and put up with all the joking but was serious when it came to the birds. Would definitely tour with him again.”

Debra

“Every aspect of this tour was great. First of all, you must have cornered the market on great young tour guides, because Jacob was wonderful. Obviously an excellent birder, he was patient with us over 70 crowd members (we teased him about “nobody over 70 ever again”), enthusiastic and had a great sense of humor. He is very easy to be around, making all feel comfortable.
Of course, the pelagic trip was, for us, the high point. We would suggest that you make the trip to Vinalhaven a regular part of the tour, and add Captain John Drury a must. He was a real character, and took special pains to make sure we saw all that we could see…even the Red-billed Tropicbird.

And the trip up Mt. Washington was so very interesting, with all the vegetation changes as the altitude changed. AND we got the Bicknell’s Thrush!

“Maine, from the mountains to the sparkling waters” perfectly describes this tour, as it encompassed a wide variety of habitat and birds. Definitely a “must” if you want to see some hard-to-get species.”

Joyce and Bill