Our cruise was great, we saw red-throated loons, bufflehead ducks, long-tailed ducks, red-breasted mergansers, black ducks, black-back gulls, herring gulls, ring billed gulls, a Northern gannet, great cormorants, double crested cormorants, and harbor seals!
The wind was really powerful when we were moving and the majority of my pictures were just absolutely ridiculous in the worst way. Also, bobbing around in the Atlantic makes taking any picture a challenge, even when the boat came to a stop. The boat did have complementary hot cocoa which was awesome to get a quick warm up, but bundling up was key, while you could stay indoors, outside was best as you didn't have cloudy/salty windows to obstruct your view! I was really happy with my brand new boots that are supposed to be good down to -40F, they performed well in the cold. On board we also had a naturalist who helped ID birds and tell you some tidbits of interesting info about them, I learned a few new things. Also, just sailing through NY harbor was a treat, we never do touristy things, and I have never in my lifetime even been to the Statue of Liberty, so boating past the sights and under bridges was also very cool.
|A double crested cormorant. These birds breed in New York. We also saw great cormorants, which look very similar and have a white throat patch, but they nest up North.|
|Great views of the Statue of Liberty. You can see some terms and dumpsters, I can only imagine they are trying to make repairs to damages that were due to super storm Sandy.|
|A female red-breasted merganser - we saw a lot of these! They are incredibly fast in flight.|
|A pair of red-breasted mergansers in front of the boat about to make a break for it.|
|... and off they go! I love birds flying over water, it reminds me of the end of Jurassic Park where they escape and are on a chopper heading home and Dr. Grant is watching the flock of pelicans flying over the water.|
|Totally one of those pictures that didn't really come out, but I love it. This guy was using the boat to catch some air, he was just gliding along with us as we moved along.|
|This guy was so far away, but the expression on his face is priceless. I wonder if he is people watching....|
|There were probably 150-200 long tailed ducks flying together in this group, this is just a small snip it of them.|
|A rear view of a red-throated loon as we made our way back to Manhattan.|
|The Verrazano Narrows Bridge. Atop one of the towers sits a pair of Peregrine Falcons who nest there every year.|
|Brooklyn Bridge as we pull back in to Manhattan.|