New Brunswick Birdwatching Hotspots

Calling all birders: Get your binoculars, your field guide and your camera... New Brunswick is a birding hotspot, and if you enjoy searching out new species to add to your list or casually birdwatching while in nature, you’re in for a real treat.

New Brunswick is a hotbed of birdwatching activity, with its beaches rich in nutrients and marshes that provide shelter to breeding and migratory birds. Birding aficionados are wowed by the unusual diversity of species on display here, from birds of prey like the Bald eagle and Peregrine falcon to seabirds such as terns and guillemots.

Start by spotting New Brunswick’s provincial bird – the small, tame and acrobatic Black-capped chickadee – then see which other species you can add to your list. We’ve included some of the best spots for birdwatching below, but take note that the entire province offers a wealth of birdwatching opportunity.

To get you started, here are some great resources for birdwatching and nature enjoyment around the province:

Maritime Breeding Birds Atlas: A bible for the curious and the pros.

Birding NB / Oiseau NB: A friendly birding community offering a wealth of information on recent sightings and rare birds.

NatureNB: Connect with local naturalist clubs and learn about nature-related programs around New Brunswick.

Acadian Birder Alain Clavette: Follow the Twitter feed of CBC Radio’s local birding expert for beautiful photos and great tips.

#1. Mary’s Point Shorebird Interpretation Centre

Spectacular birdwatching along designated trails through forest and shorelines. View thousands of Semi-palmated sandpipers skimming the ocean’s surface and shorebirds roosting at hide tide. Learn more

#2. Johnson’s Mills Shorebird Reserve and Interpretive Centre

This birder’s paradise had been well-photographed by people around the world. Massive flocks of shorebirds journey through here each summer on their way from the Arctic to South America. Call ahead for best viewing times as they depend on the tides. Learn more

#3. Irving Nature Park

This is a breeding ground for many waterfowl of the Atlantic coastline, as well as a traditional staging site for migratory and marine birds. Free interactive programs and activities provide a unique look into the park. Learn more

#4. grand Manan Island

One of the province’s best birdwatching locations. You can catch glimpses of shearwaters, petrels, Northern Fulmar and Phalaropes on a variety of excursions, including the ferry ride over and whale-watching tours. Head to Machias Seal Island for an up-close look at Atlantic puffins. Learn more

#5. Sackville Waterfowl Park

View the waterfowl, songbirds and wildlife that inhabit the Tantramar Marshes. Over 3 km (2 mi.) of winding boardwalks and trails, plus guided tours of the park. Learn more

#6. Daly Point Nature Reserve

The rare Maritime Ringlet butterfly resides in this 40.5-ha (100-acre) park. Explore the 6 km (4 mi.) of trails that wind through a variety of flora and fauna. Learn more

#7. Ecological Park of the Acadian Peninsula

An interpretation centre and boardwalk provides a unique look into 5 ecosystems found on the Acadian Peninsula. Lookouts provide prime birdwatching opportunities. Learn more

#8. Irving Eco-Centre: la Dune de Bouctouche

A result of the wind, tides and sea currents since the last ice age, the Dune de Bouctouche is the habitat for a rich variety of marine and aquatic plants and animals, especially shorebirds and other migratory birds. Interpretive programming and events offered. Learn more

#9. Beresford Municipal Beach Park

Up to 54 species of birds have been observed at this park. The salt marsh features the rare Maritime Ringlet Butterfly, a small butterfly that lives almost exclusively in the salt marshes in and around the Chaleur Bay from the end of July to mid-August. Learn more

#10. Irishtown Nature Park

A great spot to see many birds year-round, the park has a stocked feeding station which attracts a variety of bird species and provides ornithologists an opportunity to view wildlife. Chickadees, nuthatches, finches, woodpeckers and doves can be observed. Learn more

#11. Neguac Bird Sanctuary (Île-Aux-Foins Park)

You can see the great blue heron and many other species from the observation tower in this day park. Located on a small island, more than 250 species of local and migratory birds can be spotted from the boardwalks, beach and trails. Learn more

#12. Provincial and National Parks

From the mountain peaks of Mount Carleton to the coastal landscape of New River Beach, New Brunswick parks offer excellent birdwatching opportunities plus activities, interpretation, trails and camping. Learn more