|PO Box 9021,
Wilmington, DE 19809, USA
Phone: Toll-free in USA 1-888-721-3555
from some previous
focus on nature tours
Above: although also called the "Canada Jay",
the Gray Jay is the most widespread jay in Alaska.
Below: the Steller's Jay is a bird
that was first described to science in Alaska.
following summaries here are with the most-recent tours first.
For some tours there are links below for longer narratives. Also there are links to UPCOMING TOUR ITINERARIES, and lists of BIRDS, MAMMALS, and OTHER NATURE.
Some Previous Tours:
June 2013 June 2001 May-June 1998 June 1995
Lists of: Alaska Birds Alaska Mammals Alaska Butterflies & Moths
Alaska Wildflowers & some other Plants Alaska Marine Life (inc Fish)
FONT Birding & Nature Tours in Alaska
In all, there have been 8 FONT birding & nature tours in Alaska.
Our ALASKA USA TOUR - June 2013
During our FONT
Alaska Birding & Nature Tour in June
2013 we enjoyed some wonderful bird sightings, including those
both Tufted and Horned Puffins close to us,
rafts of Common Murres on the sea along with many others on their cliff-side ledges,
clouds of Black-legged Kittiwakes in the air, and also on their cliff-side ledges,
a male Northern Wheatear singing its song, miles north of the Arctic Circle,
male and female Varied Thrushes together in a spruce tree,
both male and female Rufous Hummingbirds,
pairs of Barrow's Goldeneye and Surf Scoter on tranquil remote lakes,
Gray Jays accompanied by their darker than gray young,
and more, including both Bald and Golden Eagles, as well as Pine Grosbeaks and Pine Siskins, Redpoll and Raven, Boreal Chickadee and Alder Flycatcher (both outside a window at a place where we stayed), and both Red-necked and Horned Grebes close to us, as were both Tundra and Trumpeter Swans.
The last of these, as much as any bird, symbolizes the wilderness of Alaska, as it fits in so well with the beauty of the vast landscape.
The beauty of the Horned Grebe, in its breeding attire, was truly something to behold.
A flock of over 20 Harlequin Ducks, males & females, compactly together, was extraordinary.
And wonderful to see were two Wandering Tattlers, also along a rocky coast. Those peregrinators were behaving for us as if sometime in their travels, they had taken the time to read a bird guide themselves. Their actions were just as the book said they should be, as they bobbed and called.
A Wandering Tattler in Alaska
(photo by Howard Eskin)
Calling atop treetops were Wilson's Snipes and Lesser Yellowlegs,
as the book says they do in their nesting areas.
Watching birds in Alaska is fun, even if they are birds that we might see closer to home, acting differently.
And watching mammals was fun for us too, during our June 2013 Alaska Tour. Those we saw included:
Brown (or Grizzly) Bear, Moose (even 2 of them walking about in the parking lot of a place where we stayed), North American Porcupine, North American Beaver, Barren Ground Caribou, Dall's (or White) Sheep, Mountain Goat, the little Arctic Ground Squirrel, the big Humpback Whale, Dall's Porpoise, Harbor Porpoise, Harbor Seal, Steller's Sea Lion, the Sea Otter (on its back in the water), and the Hoary Marmot (atop a rocky ridge).
Among the butterflies we saw were the Old World Swallowtail, Western Tailed-Blue, Arctic White, Red-disked Alpine, and Mourning Cloaks on an alpine tundra not far from the Arctic Circle.
Among the wildflowers and plants that we saw were Alpine Bearberry, Labrador Tea, Moss Campion, Arctic Lupine, Wind Flower, and fields full of Alaska Cotton.
No reptile lives in Alaska, but we did encounter, a few times, an amphibian, the Wood Frog.
All of the wonderful nature and beautiful scenery that we saw and enjoyed were from the Seward area in the south, to the Copper River in the east, and north to the Brooks Range, well north of the Arctic Circle.
Geographically in the middle of these, perhaps the best of all was the magnificent mountain known as either Denali or Mount McKinley, the highest mountain in North America.
Many people during their time in Alaska either do not see that mountain, or have just a glimpse of part of it, as the weather of the mountains often covers it with clouds.
But we were so fortunate to see it well, again and again, as we were lucky to have crystal clear days, even in the Alaska Range.
At various times, we saw the massive mountain at a distance, but more than once we saw it closely. Just about the only way we could have seen it more closely would have been to climb it, and that we did not do.
In addition to the wondrous nature and the beauty of the land, and the remoteness of places that most only read about (such as the Yukon River and Brooks Range), we also enjoyed during our tour some very fine meals (such as those with fresh Alaskan Salmon), and some great companionship as we traveled and had our adventures.
More about the FONT Alaska USA Tour in June 2013
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