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Grand isle Migratory Bird Celebration Tour Descriptions

2017 TOUR DESCRIPTIONS

Kayaking Tour

Experience Grand Isle from a different perspective. Watch herons, egrets, and terns fish as you paddle along the bay gliding past oyster beds and marsh grasses – maybe even catch a glimpse of a Clapper Rail. While afloat, it’s a great opportunity to learn about the world-class fishing that Grand Isle offers from one of Grand Isle’s fishing experts! Take in the sights and sounds of being on the water!

Activity Level: moderate (including getting in and out of a low kayak; paddling for 2 hours)
Dates: April 21th and 22th, 2017
Three trips offered:
– Friday April 21, 2017 from 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM
– Saturday April 22, 2017 from 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM and 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Meeting Location: meet at Grand Isle Multiplex 15 min. prior to tour and relocate to nearby LSU Oyster Research Facility, near LDWF Lab
Fee: $20.00
– Limited to 5 kayaks per tour
– Registration required
– Weather dependent: this tour subject to cancelation due to heavy rain/lightning and high winds; See Weather Contingency Plan
*Don’t forget to bring: water shoes or shoes you don’t mind getting wet, insect repellent, hat, sunglasses, bottle of water, sunscreen, binoculars, and tour ticket
*Don’t forget to provide a contact phone number; see Weather Contingency Plan

Queen Bess Boat Tour

This tour gives visitors the opportunity to view thousands of Brown Pelicans nesting on Queen Bess Island. Queen Bess Island is located in Barataria Bay just northeast of Grand Isle and is one of three rookery sites where Brown Pelicans were reintroduced to Louisiana in 1968 after becoming extirpated. This is a great opportunity to learn from our experienced guide about the importance of small, predator-free islands on which our breeding seabird species depend. Herons, egrets, White Ibis, Roseate Spoonbills, American Oystercatchers, sandpipers, gulls, terns, and skimmers can also be seen during your voyage.

Activity Level: easy (climbing in and out of a boat, sitting/standing for 2 hours)
Dates: April 21-23th, 2017
Seven trips offered:
– Friday April 21, 2017 starting at 3:00 PM and 5:00 PM
– Saturday April 22, 2017 starting at 7:30 AM, 2:00 PM and 5:00 PM
– Sunday April 23, 2017 starting at 7:30 AM and 10:30 AM
Meeting Location: LDWF Fisheries Research Lab, 195 Ludwig Lane, Grand Isle, LA
Fee: FREE
– Limited to 5 people per tour
– Registration required
– Weather dependent: this tour is subject to cancellation due to heavy rain/lightning and high winds; see Weather Contingency Plan.
* Don’t forget to bring: hat, sunglasses, water, sunscreen, binoculars, and tour ticket
*Don’t forget to provide a contact phone number; see Weather Contingency Plan

Grand Isle State Park Tour

Join the Grand Isle State Park tour to view coastal bird species along its beachfront habitat. This is an excellent opportunity to learn about beach-nesting birds such as Least Tern and Wilson’s Plover from expert guides. The state park also provides birders a chance to look for songbird migrants within the two-½ mile nature trail loops. The trail habitat offers food and shelter to flycatchers, vireos, warblers, tanagers, orioles, grosbeaks, buntings, and more! Visitors can also get a birds-eye-view of the coastline and the ruins of historic Fort Livingston (located on Grand Terre Island east across Barataria Pass) from the state park’s observation tower.

Activity Level: moderate (includes a 1 ½ hour walking /standing tour)
Date: Saturday, April 22
Time: 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM
Meeting Location: caravan from Grand Isle Multiplex to Grand Isle State Park
Fee: $5.00
– Registration required
– Weather dependent: this tour is subject to cancellation due to heavy rain/lightning; see Weather Contingency Plan.
*Don’t forget to bring: hiking shoes, sunscreen, insect repellent, binoculars, and tour ticket.
*Don’t forget to provide a contact phone number; see Weather Contingency Plan

Grand Isle Birding Tour

A birding trip to Grand Isle’s unique Maritime Forest! These woodland chenieres are located on ancient beach ridges. The remnants of these forests are small woodlands comprised of mossy live oaks and hackberries that rise above the otherwise flat, wetland landscape. The cheniere woods provide vital habitat for migrating landbirds as they arrive from their nonstop journey across the gulf, offering a safe haven to refuel and rest to continue their journey northward. Expert tour guides will lead you through the Lafitte Woods and Landry-LeBlanc tracts (owned and managed by The Nature Conservancy) as well as other birding hotspots along this walking tour. If fall-out conditions occur, then migrants can be especially plentiful and the woods come alive with color. Expect to see species such as flycatchers, vireos, thrushes, warblers, tanagers, grosbeaks, buntings and more during this tour! Best-case fallout scenario: potentially check-off as many as 30 different species of wood warblers, possibly including Blackburnian, Swainson’s, Bay-breasted, and Cerulean!

Activity Level: moderate (a 2 hour walking tour on paved roads and dirt trails)
Dates: April 21-22, 2017
Three trips offered:
– Friday, April 21, 2017, 3:30 PM – 5:30 PM
– Saturday April 22, 2017, 8:30 AM – 10:30 AM and 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Meeting Location: Grand Isle Multiplex
Fee: $5.00
– Registration required
– Weather dependent: this tour is subject to cancellation due to heavy rain/lightning; see Weather Contingency Plan.
*Don’t forget to bring: rain boots (some areas may have standing water/mud) rain jacket or poncho, a bottle of water, insect repellent, sunscreen, binoculars, and tour ticket
*Don’t forget to provide a contact phone number; see Weather Contingency Plan

Native Plant Identification Tour

Take a leisurely stroll with a plant identification expert to discover the native plants that inhabit the island. You can even sample some of the edible plants you find along the way! To learn even more about Louisiana’s native plants, purchase one of Dr. Allen’s plant guidebooks available during the festival.

Activity Level: easy (a 2 hour walking tour)
Date: Saturday April 21, 2017
Two trips offered: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM and 1:30 PM – 3:30 PM
Meeting Location: Grand Isle Multiplex
Fee: $5.00
– Registration required
– Weather dependent: this tour is subject to cancellation due to heavy rain/lightning; see Weather Contingency Plan.
*Don’t forget to bring: rain boots (some areas may have standing water/mud), a bottle of water, sunscreen, insect repellent, binoculars and tour ticket
*Don’t forget to provide a contact phone number; see Weather Contingency Plan

Island History Tour

The Island History Tour offers visitors a chance to view some of the historical homes still standing on the island and learn about the rich history of Grand Isle including plantations that were established on the island in the 19th century, the world-class fishing industry, the pirates that frequented the island, and the development of the island into a vacation resort for wealthy families following the Civil War. In addition, learn about the many hurricanes the island and its community have endured throughout its history.

Activity Level: easy (riding 2 hours in a wagon throughout town).
Dates: Saturday April 22 and Sunday April 23, 2017
Two trips offered:
– Saturday, April 22, 2017, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM
– Sunday, April 23, 2017, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Meeting Location: Grand Isle Multiplex
Fee: $5.00
– Registration required
– Weather dependent: this tour is subject to cancellation due to heavy rain/lightning; see Weather Contingency Plan.
*Don’t forget to bring a bottle of water, sunscreen, and tour ticket
*Don’t forget to provide a contact phone number; see Weather Contingency Plan

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Research Lab Tour

As guests of LDWF, tour the 35,000 square foot state-of-the-art Fisheries Research Lab to learn about the various monitoring and research programs biologists are conducting on a variety of marine species such as sharks, finfish, crabs, shrimp, oysters, and their associated habitats and ecosystems, all of which are crucial to the economy of Louisiana. The lab also serves as a hatchery area for both shellfish and finfish.

Activity Level: easy (walking/standing, includes some stair climbing)
Date: Saturday April 22, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Meeting Location: LDWF Grand Isle Fisheries Lab, 195 Ludwig Lane
Fee: FREE
– Limited to 15 people
– Registration required
*Don’t forget to bring your tour ticket

NEW TOUR! GRAND ISLE AREA “BIG DAY”

This fast-paced tour will take you all over the island, and possibly beyond, in search of as many bird species as possible! The expert guides will lead the caravan of personal vehicles to take you to all the birding hotspots on the island, giving you the best chance to tally as many species as you can. Stops include Grand Isle’s unique Maritime Forest, neighborhood hotspots, Grand Isle beaches, possibly Elmer’s Island, Port Fourchon, and more!

Activity Level: moderate, walking and driving tour
Date: Saturday April 22, 2017
Time: 7:00 AM – 11:30 AM break for lunch/seminar, resume @ 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM (note- leaders may opt to continue birding during “intermission” from noon-2:00 PM and may continue birding for a while after 5:00 PM; participants registered for the tour are welcome to do this as well)
OPTIONAL: IF you would like to do a half-day during the morning portion only or afternoon only, then the fee is $20.00
Meeting Location: Grand Isle Multiplex, 6:45 AM and 2:00 PM
Fee: $25.00 per person, full day tour
– Registration required
– Limited to 20 participants
– Weather dependent: this tour is subject to cancellation or delay due to heavy rain/lightning; see Weather Contingency Plan.
*Don’t forget to bring: Boots, snacks, water, insect repellent, hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, binoculars (spotting scope if you have one), and tour ticket
*Don’t forget to provide a contact phone number; see Weather Contingency Plan

****If a tour is canceled due to inclement weather, then a full refund can be obtained at the registration booth when you present your tour ticket or by contacting the Grand Isle Port Commission (985) 787-2229.****