Isle of Shoals Birding Trip


ATTENTION: Registration is not yet open for 2023 Public Programs!If you have any questions, please contact us at Thank you!

Common Yellowthroat by M. Walters

Experience the magic of the Isles of Shoals in early fall. Two nights on Appledore Island will give us the opportunity to explore the diversity of the islands. Over 200 species of songbirds, seabirds, and waterfowl occur on Appledore as migrants – making it a perfect spot to observe fall movements. 

The Appledore Island Migration Banding Station will be in operation and we will have the chance to observe songbird migrants up close. Neighboring White and Seavey Islands are home to a thriving Common, Roseate and Arctic tern colony after restoration efforts were initiated by NH Audubon in 1997. Most of the terns will have started their southern journey, but we will take a boat tour of the islands, hear project details, and land if possible.

In addition to all the spectacular birding that the islands have to offer, we will take time to explore other aspects of Appledore, Shoals Marine Laboratory, and Celia Thaxter’s garden. Activities may include exploring the intertidal, an island history walk, or learning about SML's innovative research programs focused on understanding and sustaining the marine environment.

Click here for the 2019 syllabus.

  • (603) 862-5346

    Price: $730 for Section 1, $900 for Section 2

    Price is per person. All-inclusive with: overnight accommodations, all meals, snacks and beverages, all program activities, and round-trip boat transportation between Portsmouth, NH, and Appledore Island. Space is limited due to our vessel and housing capacities, so reserve your spot soon! This program is open to adults 18 years of age and up.

Appledore Island is a rugged landscape with uneven, slightly steep and rocky paths. Access on/off the island is via a floating dock, a steep ramp, and a set of stairs. Sturdy walking shoes are required throughout the program. Please review our Safety at Shoals page for any questions about boat safety, island terrain, medical access, or dietary needs.

Departure from Portsmouth, NH:


Departure from SML:


Please note: Participants should anticipate the total boat transit time to be approximately 90 minutes.

SML boats will run rain or shine, so long as the captain deems it safe to travel. Passengers should come prepared with appropriate clothing in the event of rain or high winds (ocean spray). If the captain deems travel unsafe, boats schedules may be impacted until the weather passes. Communications regarding any weather-related delays will come via email and telephone from SML's main office.

Cancellation Received

  • At least 30 days before departure = 100% refund
  • 29-15 days before departure =  50% refund
  • Less than 15 days before departure = 0%



Dr. Pamela Hunt

Avian Conservation Biologist, NH Audubon

Becky Suomala

NH Audubon

Mark Suomala

Mark's Bird Tours

Short-billed Dowitchers foraging in Appledore pond (photo by Collin Love)