Connecticut Audbon Society
EcoTravel

EcoTravel

EcoTravel Day Trips

Swallow Boat Cruises for 2021


Swallow Cruises       
Sunday, September 5, 12, 19, 26, 2021 

Witness one of the most spectacular avian events when thousands of Tree Swallows congregate on the lower Connecticut River at sunset to settle in on a giant communal roost during their fall migration. Birds come from miles away, creating a ballet of synchronized flight before settling down. Renowned ornithologist and artist Roger Tory Peterson wrote that “the tornadoes of Tree Swallows eclipsed any other avian spectacle I have ever seen.” Join naturalists as we journey first by steam train and then by boat to see the awe-inspiring display. Enjoy picturesque scenery from a 70-foot Mississippi-style river boat’s three decks. Food, a full bar, and restrooms are on board. If you take only one trip this fall, make sure it’s this one! Tours are about three and a half hours in length and range in departure from 3:30-5:00 p.m. (The later in the month, the earlier the departure time). Returns to the dock at approximately 8:30pm.

September 5

September 12

September 19

September 26

Click on the date above or call for reservations. 860-767-0660. 
RESERVATIONS ARE NOT REFUNDABLE. 

Self-Drive Day Trips

Our new trips in the COVID era, these Self-Drive offerings are early morning hikes to under-visited locations throughout eastern Connecticut. Hikes range from 3-5 miles, and aim to end before 12 p.m. Locations include properties owned by Connecticut Audubon, local land trusts, The Nature Conservancy, and more. A perfect chance to see what EcoTravel is all about!

 

June

Bluff Head and Northwoods Preserve, Guilford
Wednesday, June 9     7 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Recently voted one of the most beautiful places in Guilford, Bluff Head is a remnant of molten rock that was lifted along fault lines over 200 million years ago. The trails that traverse this property highlight the difference in geology found to the west and east of the main fault line. To the west the primary rock is basalt and the trap rocks, while to the east is mostly gray schist that was deposited when Connecticut was covered by a tropical sea during the Jurassic.
Estimated Distance: 5 miles.
Fee: Members $85/Nonmembers $95.

Classic Day Trips

Our tried-and-true experience, if you’ve always wanted to travel with EcoTravel this is the great way to test the waters. These full-day trips visit locations across Southern New England, Eastern New York State, and Long Island, searching for birds and other natural phenomena. There’s no better way to meet the staff and guides!

Classic Day Trips include transportation from a central meeting spot.

June

Breeding Birds of Boston Hollow
Saturday, June 5     6 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Boston Hollow is both a geologically and biologically significant location within Connecticut. Located near Ashford, this ancient fault provides habitat for many migrants that typically breed farther north, including up to 17 species of warblers! Come explore the northeastern portion of the state as we search for migrant breeders and learn more about the geologic history of Connecticut.
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $85/Nonmembers $95.

Hunt for the Golden-winged Warbler
Sunday, June 6     5:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Although just across the border in New York, Sterling Forest State Park is home to a wealth of species that are uncommon in Connecticut. Hooded, Cerulean, and Golden-winged warblers are fairly common breeding species at the site and should all be seen on this adventure. The expansive forest has a wealth of different habitats, making it a paradise for birders. Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $95/Nonmembers $110.

Connecticut Audubon’s Chaney Sanctuary
Friday, June 11     7 a.m. – 3 p.m.
New and old members alike, come visit some of our less-known statewide properties! The Chaney Sanctuary is 233 acres of varied habitat nestled in the hills of Montville. Participants will look at its geologic and farm land history, then travel on to the 65-acre Haagenson Preserve in East Haddam featuring views of the Connecticut River and Salmon River tributary. Many songbirds are on territory and beginning to nest.
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $85/Nonmembers $100.

Connecticut Audubon’s Trail Wood
Saturday, June 12     7 a.m. – 3 p.m.
The former homestead of influential writer Edwin Way Teale and his wife Nellie, Trail Wood was entrusted to our care in 1993. It is here that Edwin wrote ten of his 27 books, including the 1966 Pulitzer Prize- winning Wandering Through Nature. The meandering trails and landmarks still hold the same names the Teales gave them. We’ll explore this hidden gem of Connecticut Audubon and search for breeding migrants.
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $85/Nonmembers $100.

Berkshire Breeders
Saturday, June 19     6 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Spend the day in habitat that is home to the southernmost breeding range of some neotropical migrants, including warblers and vireos. Visit Skinner Park, which sits on a 200-million-year-old mountaintop surrounded by breathtaking views of four states and the winding Connecticut River below. Summit Mount Greylock for additional spectacular views. This area is one of the most picturesque sections of the river valley!
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $95/Nonmembers $110.

July

Connecticut Audubon’s Croft Preserve
Friday, July 2     7 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Located in Goshen, Connecticut Audubon Society’s Richard G. Croft Memorial Preserve is within one of the largest continual forest blocks in the state. The fantastic mix of habitats found throughout is home to uncommon and rare breeding species, including Ruffed Grouse and Northern Goshawk. This property is managed primarily for wildlife, and as such the trails can be steep and challenging to navigate with no infrastructure in place.
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $85/Nonmembers $100.

Hartford Audubon Sanctuaries
Wednesday, July 7     7 a.m. – 3 p.m.
North of Hartford, four sanctuaries are actively managed for bird habitat by Hartford Audubon Society. Ranging from cattail marshes and ponds to young forests on reclaimed farmland, the diversity of these little-known sanctuaries is just begging to be explored. Many birds will have young, so keep your eyes open!
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $85/Nonmembers $100.

North Fork Wineries
Wednesday, July 14     8 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Back by popular demand! Join us on a trip to Long Island’s beautiful North Fork. Did you know that this area has over 30 vineyards? Visit two of our favorites, Duckwalk Vineyards and Osprey’s Dominion (of course). Take a tour of one or more of these vineyards and enjoy wine tastings as well as an introduction to the world of enology (the study of wines and wine-making). Other vineyards we hope to have time to visit include Lenz, Croteaux, and Paumanok.
Leader: Andy Griswold.
Fee: Members $155/ Nonmembers $170.
Times may change depending on ferry schedule.

Late Summer on the Cape
Tuesday, July 20     6 a.m. – 6 p.m.
In late summer, the young birds are out and about and adults are prepping to migrate. Spend a day exploring the southern shore of Cape Cod, from salt marsh to grasslands to hardwood forests. Birds will be plentiful as we adventure through the unique habitats that make up this highly popular destination.
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $95/Nonmembers $110.

August

Coastal Connecticut
Saturday, August 7     7 a.m. – 4 p.m.
The birds that gather along the Connecticut shoreline each August are a sign that migration is underway and the winter months are close at hand. Shorebird numbers are rapidly increasing, and large flocks of terns are beginning to congregate off the coast. Adventure along the coastline in search of migrants fattening up before their continued southward push.
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $95/Nonmembers $110.

September

Jamaica Bay Shorebirds
Saturday, September 11     7 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Jamaica Bay, located on western Long Island within Brooklyn and Queens, is one of the most important urban wildlife refuges, hosting a variety of habitats, including salt marsh, several fresh and brackish pools, and an open expanse of bay and islands, making this destination a fabulous location for shorebirds.
Leader: Matt Bell.
Fee: Members $95/Nonmembers $110.

Concord and Walden Pond
Saturday, September 25     8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Enjoy exploring Concord, Massachusetts, the village in which Henry David Thoreau grew up. Learn about Thoreau’s extraordinary insights into life, nature, and social responsibility. Thoreau’s writings inspired respect for nature and even, some consider, the birth of the conservation movement. After a guided tour of the Thoreau Farm (his birthplace), the group will have a picnic lunch at Walden Pond and enjoy a trail walk of the surrounding Walden Woods.
Leader: Jim Sherwonit.
Fee: Members $85/Nonmembers $100.

Boat Trips

Swallow Cruise
Sunday, September 5, 12, 19, 26
Witness one of the most spectacular avian events when thousands of Tree Swallows congregate on the lower Connecticut River at sunset to settle in on a giant communal roost during their fall migration. Birds come from miles away, creating a ballet of synchronized flight before settling down. Renowned ornithologist and artist Roger Tory Peterson wrote that “the tornadoes of Tree Swallows eclipsed any other avian spectacle I have ever seen.” Join naturalists as we journey first by steam train and then by boat to see the awe-inspiring display. Enjoy picturesque scenery from a 70-foot Mississippi-style river boat’s three decks. Food, a full bar, and restrooms are on board. If you take only one trip this fall, make sure it’s this one! Tours are about three and a half hours in length and range in departure from 3:30-5:00 p.m. (The later in the month, the earlier the departure time).
Fee: $45 for members and nonmembers. Eight years of age and over.
Reserve now! Trips sell out quickly. Call 860-767-0660.
A GREAT GIFT IDEA!

Rarity Expeditions

Have you ever wanted to search for a rare bird in a nearby state, but couldn’t find directions or were concerned about going alone? Here’s your chance to join EcoTravel’s Rarity Expeditions! We’ll provide the transportation, driver, pleasant company, experienced leadership, and logistical arrangements. Expeditions range from a full day of chasing to the possibility of a one night stay near the target bird. While there’s no guarantee the bird will be seen, the thrill of the chase and the camaraderie that comes with it make every trip an exciting experience!

Here’s how it works: first, use this form to sign on. Then, when a “bird of significance” is in the area, EcoTravel will contact you through text and email with the chance to join the adventure. You’ll have the option of coming along or waiting for the next big rarity. The fee will be determined by how far we’ll have to drive for each bird, and the number of people participating.

Wondering what a “bird of significance” is? The main targets will be species rare to North American, such as European Vagrants. Other species may include otherwise hard-to-see birds, including rare owls and regional species that are highly localized. For a list of species seen recently that fit the criteria, click here.

For Gift Certificates: 860-767-0660

Click here for a printable version of our Full Newsletter.

 

 

 

Follow Us Facebook Twitter Instagram