The puffins can also be viewed from our skiff. The two islands are home to hundreds of puffins and can easily be reached by boat. Travelers looking to enjoy some fish and chips can head to Skipper's Restaurant, Little Dairy King, or Shannon's Pub & Grill. At that time both partners incubate the eggs, and one month later baby puffins leave the nest. Melissa Mayntz has been a birder and wild bird enthusiast for 30+ years. Landing on the islands requires a special permit and anyone wishing to take a private boat out to see the puffins needs to check into regulations and restrictions regarding the area around the islands. Eastern Egg Rock in the midcoast region, Seal Island and Matinicus Rock at the mouth of Penobscot Bay, and Machias Seal Island and Petit Manan Island off the downeast coast provide habitat for more than 4,000 puffins each summer. All puffin species have large ranges and can be very widespread within that range. This colourful seabird with its "clown-like" appearance is a favourite of residents and visitors to "Canada's Ocean Playground." Visitors can park at the nearby lighthouse and take a five-minute stroll down a path to reach a viewing area that is separated from the breeding ground by only a fence. The island has on bird observatory and is possible to stay there. Tips for RVers: Call ahead to inquire about parking – there should be room at the nearby high school. Few people realize that there are only about 70 pairs of puffins in the province, most of which are found on the Bird Islands, St. Arms, Cape Breton. Atlantic puffins usually inhabit the northern hemisphere, Quebec is one of the most easily accessible places in Canada to see these adorable birds. Bird Island Tours. Captive puffins are part of zoo and aquarium exhibits at many attractions around the world, both inside and outside their typical ranges. Introducing "One Thing": A New Video Series, The Spruce Gardening & Plant Care Review Board, The Spruce Renovations and Repair Review Board. Knowing where to find these small auks at different times of the year can help birders see them in the wild, and captive puffins are also great for intimate observation and bird photography. Roughly 300 pairs of puffins nest there, although the area looks even more crowded because a few other species are found there, too. Puffins are fun, attractive birds, but they can be incredibly elusive for birders who hope to add them to a life list. In Iceland, you can find species called Atlantic puffin, which is also the most common puffin. Tufted Puffin: These puffins are easily recognized by their long plumes during the breeding season when they can be seen along rocky coasts and barren islands in the north Pacific from British Columbia and Alaska as far south as Washington, Oregon, and northern California as well as the island of Hokkaido in Japan. Limited Time Offer: Get a free copy of the Canadian Traveller Blogger's. Akurey and Lunday Islands. Puffins in Elliston, Newfoundland (Canada) Seeing puffins in Elliston, Canada is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. When the birds come to land to breed, they undergo a change and begin sporting a bright orange and yellow beak, dressing up a bit to catch a mate – or to keep their existing mate happy since the Atlantic Puffin is monogamous and mates for life. All Rights Reserved. Actually the colonies aren’t really accessible at all and the puffins can only be viewed from the water. The four islands that make up the reserve are just a few kilometres from Avalon Peninsula and are only accessible by boat. The Spruce uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. While none of them are threatened or endangered, they can be difficult to see in the wild. Among the best places to see puffins in Newfoundland are the four islands that make up the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve near the Avalon Peninsula. Beehive Island: named for the constantly busy scene as puffins go about their mating here. Maine ocean islands provide the only nesting sites for Atlantic puffins in the United States. Free parking is available at Puffins Landing. While the boat tours in Bay Bulls and other places are also a good experience, this site can be accessed free of charge and gives you the best and closest look at puffins in all of Newfoundland. Emerald Cove, Beehive Island, Resurrection Peninsula and the Chiswell Islands are locations where you just might see quite a few birds. “It was really amazing to see so many puffins and other birds in the same spot.” Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press Getting to the island is a bit of a challenge. The four islands that make up the reserve are just a few kilometres from Avalon Peninsula and are only accessible by boat. What you might see: Puffins, dolphins, sharks, humpback whales, otters, jellyfish, killer whales, bald eagles, and even icebergs if the season is right! The closest land-viewing site is at Elliston Point on the Bonavista Peninsula. In 1992 it was made the official bird of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. You can see those Puffins in Iceland, Faroe Islands, Canada, Norway and even in Scotland or Maine in the USA. There’s so much to see and do in Kenai Fjords National Park, including seeing puffins, which are different from that of the Atlantic breeds off the shores of Alaska.Kenai Fjords National Park hosts two types during the season—the tufted and horned. We don’t recommend taking your … Puffins set up their summer homes on rocky islands along the coast, away from potential land predators. One of the best places to see whales in Newfoundland that’s not too far from St. John’s is from Bay Bulls on the Irish Loop, around the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve. Bird Island Tours are Cape Breton’s longest operating nature tour since 1972. Once at the breeding ground, females lay their single egg in a burrow that they dig themselves, clearing out a tunnel that’s 70 to 110 cm long. Don't be surprised if … Puffins are part of the bird genus Fratercula which belong to the auk family. The bird is so prevalent (and adorable) that Newfoundland has adopted the Atlantic Puffin as its official provincial bird and has several protected areas for the birds to nest. Depending on when you go to view a colony you may see only adults, adults and chicks, or adults and juveniles getting ready to depart. I also didn’t know we’d be visiting an island the puffins call home. Hwy 312, Exit 12. These seabirds with their gaudy bills, pudgy bodies, and comical expressions are popular residents of marine parks as well. So plan ahead, book boat passages but be prepared for disappointment if bad weather prevents sea crossings. 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