Pelagic Birding Trips with The Bird Guide, Inc.


1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Choose your trip below, print out the preparation material, then click on the link to reserve your space!

Pelagic trip schedule:


February 22, 2014, Laysan Albatross search trip: Laysan Albatross, Short-tailed Albatross! Trip report.



Sunday, May 18, 2014 - Spring Deep Water
$175; 6 spaces remain
6:00 am departure
* Trip confirmed!
Date chosen to have the best chance for Murphy's Petrel. Expect Long-tailed Jaegers and breeding plumage Red Phalaropes!

Saturday, August 16, 2014 - Summer Deep Water
$175; 28 spaces remain
6:00 am departure
What a wonderful trip we had last year with great looks at both our target birds: 61 Leach's Storm-Petrels and 5 Scripps's Murrelets!

Saturday, August 23, 2014 - Seabirds of Oregon
$140; 18 spaces remain
7:00 am departure
Best 8 hour trip for Long-tailed Jaegers and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels.

Saturday, September 6, 2014 - Oregon Shorebird Festival
$85; 26 spaces remain
7:00 am departure
Fun beginners trip!

Saturday, September 20, 2014 - Seabirds of Oregon
$140; $125 early signup discount
7:00 am departure
Expect Buller's Shearwaters and South Polar Skuas.

Saturday, October 4, 2014 - Perpetua Bank
$165; $150 early signup discount
8:00 am departure
Our best weekend for rarities along with best chance for Flesh-footed Shearwaters and South Polar Skuas.



* (signup numbers updated 4/18/2014 ) Current status kept up-to-date, no need to inquire first before filling out reservation form. Trips may cancel if minimum signup not reached 21-30 days in advance--please sign up early. Status of "trip confirmed" indicates minimum signup met.


1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Oregon Shorebird Festival: Introductory pelagic trip

5-hour trip from Charleston, Oregon
Past trip report:   1 September 2007 (photos)

Preparing for your Coos Bay pelagic trip: (Betty Kay Charters) what to bring and wear, seasickness prevention, motel list, map and directions to the boat. Print this out! Reservations: online reservation form, payment details, cancellation policy & waiver of liability.

Especially for beginners! The Bird Guide, Inc. is proud once again to host the pelagic trip for the Oregon Shorebird Festival. This shorter trip on a large 50-foot boat should allow all to get a taste of a typical pelagic trip, while offering quite a few of the seabirds possible on longer trips. Expected seabirds include Black-footed Albatross, Parasitic Jaeger, Sabine's Gull, Fork-tailed Storm-Petrel, Sooty & Pink-footed Shearwater, Northern Fulmar, Pomarine Jaeger, Red-necked Phalarope, Cassin's Auklets, and more! As with all our pelagic birding trips, on-board guides will point out seabirds and other marine life and describe identification and natural history.

You do not have to participate in the Shorebird Festival in order to attend the pelagic trip. Contact Dawn Grafe of the US Fish & Wildlife Service for more information or surf the Oregon Shorebird Festival web site.



1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Seabirds of Oregon: Traditional full day pelagic trip

8 hour trip from Newport, Oregon
Past trip reports:   Archive of all trips  

Preparing for your Newport pelagic trip: (Newport Tradewinds Charter) what to bring and wear, seasickness prevention, motel list, map and directions to the boat. Print this out! Reservations: online reservation form, payment details, cancellation policy & waiver of liability.

Come enjoy the seabirds of Oregon! This full-day traditional pelagic trip off the central Oregon coast is a general introduction to Oregon's seabirds. This trip is good for beginners and experienced seabirders alike.

We'll spend the first hour of our trip near shore examining coastal waterbirds and marine mammals. If sea conditions permit, we'll cruise toward Yaquina Head seabird colony. Among the thousands of Common Murres in the water off the scenic lighthouse, we will locate the tiny and endangered Marbled Murrelets. While we watch for Gray Whales we will also keep an eye out for rare Manx Shearwaters--a bird we have seen several times in this area.

The second part of our trip we cruise out 27 miles to the edge of the continental shelf. During this part of our adventure we're sure to encounter flocks of Sooty and Pink-footed Shearwaters (and during fall Buller's). This stretch of waters will also contain Rhinoceros and Cassin's Auklets as well as Red-necked Phalaropes. Don't be surprised if Dall's Porpoises join us to ride our bow wake, or you see the fins of sharks on the surface if you are lucky enough to get a calm day.

You'll know we're near the third portion of our trip when cries of "Albatross!" ring out and you see these magnificent creatures gliding over the seas. At this point we'll stop the boat and chum Black-footed Albatrosses and Northern Fulmars to the boat for great photo ops. Here in deeper water we could see all 3 species of jaegers (Long-tailed in August), perhaps South Polar Skua (fall), Sabine's Gull, Arctic Terns, and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels.

The return trip to port of two-and-a-half hours is generally without break. There is ample time to study the unique flight style of each shearwater species. Scan the waters ahead for a better looks at the auklets or maybe spot a species you missed earlier. It is not unusual to see Humpback Whales on the return. But often, this is a time to commune with your fellow birding comrades and reflect on the unique experience of being at sea.


1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Premier Perpetua Bank: Albatross Hotspot

10 hour trip from Newport, Oregon
Past trip reports:   Archive of all trips  

Preparing for your Perpetua Bank trip: (Newport Tradewinds) what to bring and wear, seasickness prevention, motel list, map and directions to the boat. Print this out! Reservations: online reservation form, payment details, cancellation policy & waiver of liability.

Consistently outstanding! Since 1996 The Bird Guide, Inc. has led over sixty pelagic trips to Perpetua Bank and the phenomenal number of albatrosses found in the eddies around this under water sea mount. Black-footed Albatrosses are found here all year and are common from March to October. Laysan Albatrosses are found in low numbers on about half of our trips from October to May. Short-tailed Albatrosses are rare, but increasing. We have seen singles from October to March, and expect to see them occasionally. Perpetua Bank has proved to be a magnet for rare albatrosses. Our first trip here in 1996 recorded White-capped (Shy) Albatross. We spotted another (perhaps the same individual?) in 2001. We were amazed to find Wandering (Antipodes) Albatross in 2008. These southern hemisphere albatrosses are not expected anywhere in the North Pacific!

Our pelagic birding trips aren't just for albatrosses, though. We have refined our route and timing to detect the most species and highest number of birds, including rarities. We encounter commercial fishing boats frequently that attract hundreds, and even thousands, of seabirds, which we leisurely scrutinize at point blank range! Marine animals, including whales, dolphins, seals, sharks, and fish are often spotted. Our expert seabird guides help you spot and identify all the birds and marine life present.

Your fantastic birdwatching trip starts in Yaquina Bay with abundant waterbirds and chance for rocky-type shorebirds on the jetties. Then, on the large, 56-foot charter vessel, you move along shore briefly, viewing Marbled Murrelets, Pigeon Guillemots, and other nearshore specialties, including Gray Whales. Soon we're heading offshore, while your pelagic guides point out pelagic birds flying by or sitting on the water ahead.

Our first chum stop is on the shelf break, 27 miles off Newport. After we're satisfied here we head south 15 miles to the seaward slope of the Perpetua Bank sea mount. At this outstanding underwater feature we'll again chum albatrosses and other seabirds right up to the boat for you to observe and photograph!


1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Winter seabirds: Laysan Albatross search trip

7-8 hours, departing 8:00 am
Past trip report:   1 December 2012  21 February 2009

Preparing for your Newport pelagic trip: (Newport Tradewinds Charter)
What to bring and wear, seasickness prevention, motel list, map and directions to the boat. Print this out!
Reservations: online reservation form, payment details, cancellation policy & waiver of liability.

Laysan Albatrosses and winter seabirds! Winter is the time to search for Laysan Albatrosses and several other winter specialty birds. This trip is much different than fall pelagic trips. There will be few or no shearwaters, jaegers, terns, or phalaropes. Instead gulls, fulmars, and auklets predominate.

Nearshore we can expect Ancient Murrelets and Short-tailed Shearwaters. Other possibilities include Long-tailed Ducks and perhaps rare Yellow-billed Loons or King Eiders!

Offshore there should be a multitude of gulls including Thayer's Gull, Black-legged Kittiwakes, and perhaps Glaucous Gull. This is a perfect trip for learning gull ID of 8+ species, with 3 or 4 hybrids thrown in for good measure.

Three species of albatrosses are possible, including a good chance for the endangered Short-tailed Albatross. Other rarities are possible, though unlikely, including perhaps Mottled Petrel (2012), Thick-billed Murre, Parakeet Auklet (2012), and Horned Puffin.


1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Special Summer Deep Water Pelagic Trip: Leach's Storm-Petrel and Scripps's Murrelet search trip

12 hour trip.
Past trip report: 2 August 2013
Preparing for your Newport pelagic trip: (Newport Tradewinds Charter)
What to bring and wear, seasickness prevention, motel list, map and directions to the boat. Print this out!
Reservations: online reservation form, payment details, cancellation policy & waiver of liability.

Search for Oregon's rarest and remotest birds! We'll ride on board a faster boat that will get us out beyond 60 miles and back in a 12-hour trip.

Please note that this trip is for experienced seabirders only! We will not stop for common birds near shore. We may travel most of the 4 hours out to 60 miles (and back again) without stopping, unless briefly for unusual birds. Because we are traveling faster this portion of the ride may be bouncy, depending upon sea conditions, making binocular use difficult. Once we get 60 miles offshore we'll slow down and have 4 hours of quality birding time in deep water.

The route is nearly due west. We'll spot and call out lots of the common seabirds as we travel. About 2 hours into the trip, and 30 miles offshore, we may see the first Black-footed Albatrosses and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels as we pass over underwater mountains.

As we continue toward deepening water we'll search for Scripps's Murrelets. Once we reach 60 miles offshore, where the Pacific tectonic plate slips under North America, we reach the Abyss--the deep ocean more than 1400 fathoms (more than a mile and a half deep). Now we slow down and search for Leach's Storm-Petrels.

There are very few individual birds out here. In summer we expect the "Deep Water Six": an occasional Black-footed Albatross, Sooty Shearwater, Leach's Storm-Petrel, Red Phalarope, Long-tailed Jaeger, and Arctic Tern. Any other bird out here is likely to be something rare...

No other pelagic bird species are expected, but several are possible in summer. Cook's Petrel, Hawaiian Petrel, Black Storm-Petrel, Ashy Storm-Petrel, Wilson's Storm-Petrel, Guadalupe Murrelet, and Red-billed Tropicbird seem reasonable to consider. Anything else is a dream... Oregon has one accepted sight record of Juan Fernandez Petrel from June 50 miles offshore. There have been several summer reports by non-birders of unidentified frigatebirds out here, which may be Great Frigatebirds or Magnificent Frigatebirds. Though Oregon has no records yet, Great-winged Petrel, Bulwer's Petrel, and Craveri's Murrelet are possible.


1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Special Spring Deep Water Pelagic Trip: Murphy's Petrel and Parakeet Auklet search trip

12 hour trip.
Preparing for your Newport pelagic trip: (Newport Tradewinds Charter)
What to bring and wear, seasickness prevention, motel list, map and directions to the boat. Print this out!
Reservations: online reservation form, payment details, cancellation policy & waiver of liability.

Search for Oregon's rarest and remotest birds! We'll ride on board a faster boat that will get us out beyond 60 miles and back in a 12-hour trip.

Please note that this trip is for experienced seabirders only! We will not stop for common birds near shore. We may travel most of the 4 hours out to 60 miles (and back again) without stopping, unless briefly for unusual birds. Because we are traveling faster this portion of the ride may be bouncy, depending upon sea conditions, making binocular use difficult. Once we get 60 miles offshore we'll slow down and have 4 hours of quality birding time in deep water.

The route is nearly due west. We'll spot and call out lots of the common seabirds as we travel. About 2 hours into the trip, and 30 miles offshore, we travel over underwater mountains that interrupt deeper ocean currents and we may see the first Black-footed Albatrosses and Fork-tailed Storm-Petrels and perhaps Laysan Albatrosses.

For the next hour we're on slope waters that deepen quickly. This is an excellent area to search the water for very rare Parakeet Auklets and Horned Puffins.

Then, 60 miles offshore, where the Pacific tectonic plate slips under North America, we reach the Abyss--the deep ocean more than 1400 fathoms (more than a mile and a half deep). Now we slow down and search for our target birds.

There are very few individual birds out here. But we expect a few Leach's Storm-Petrels, Long-tailed Jaegers, Arctic Terns, Red Phalaropes. We'll be searching specifically for mega-rare Murphy's Petrels and Mottled Petrels out in this deep water.

Oregon has a couple of spring sight records, now, of Ashy Storm-Petrels and one accepted sight record of Hornby's Storm-Petrel. These were both spotted by multiple birders from luxury cruise liners. We'll be a lot closer to the water and it will be much easier to get closer looks at these birds as we bring them in to our chum. Let's be the first to photograph these in Oregon and get verifiable evidence!


1: Choose your pelagic trip (this page)     |     2: Reserve your space     |     3: Prepare for your trip

Questions? Greg Gillson

Its effortless gliding flight, low over the wave troughs, is a source
of wonder for the few who have a chance to observe it.


Black-footed Albatross account
W. Earl Godfrey
The Birds of Canada (1979)


thebirdguide.com