American Puffin

Maine moments 206This past week July 22 I ventured out onto Muscongus Bay off New Harbor Maine, a gem of a small town near Pemaquid Light, south of Rockland. A 60 foot tour boat took a crowd of about 100 people out 5 miles on a gorgeous calm 5:30pm cruise past moored lobster craft and pine treed shoreline coves to Eastern Egg Rock where some 148 pairs of American puffins reside. I could see Monhegan Island to my south and the Camden Hills to the northwest beyond a gentle blue horizon of seawater, very little swells.  The captain steered the boat around this jagged rocky flat out there, allowing both sides of his boat, the Hardy III for everybody to glimpse these little guys! Arctic terns, black-headed gulls and guillemots also joined the show. There were some solo puffin displays as well as two on a rock and three swimming together off my starboard, my binoculars and camera busy!  After August these little birds go north again to Canada and Greenland. The Audubon Society has relocated this colony from other Maine locations of Seal Island, the Petit Manan NWR. beyond Acadia National Park spreading the species futher south about for protection from predators like seals-and for us to enjoy!

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