Skip to content

Birding and family activities

Banding activities – Guided hikes – Pelagic bird cruises 

Northern Saw-whet Owl © Laetitia Desbordes

The Côte-Nord is at the top of the list of RCM in Quebec with an impressive 354 species observed over the years (including some exceptional species, the latest being the Small-billed Eleania at the Tadoussac Dunes). 

Although many activities take place at the Tadoussac Dunes, which is a must-see in the area, there are several exceptional observation sites in the region. The Festival has set up excursions to discover these renowned sites and to observe a beautiful diversity of species. These excursions are intended for both beginner and experienced birders. The sharing of knowledge is also part of these outings! 

Open to all 

Activities are open to all: families, curious, beginner or expert birders. 

Online reservations 

The booking links are below each activity.  Reservations are opened!

Bad weather 

Outdoor activities will be cancelled in case of continuous rain or strong wind. 

Blackpoll warbler ©Jocelyn Praud

From September, 18 to September, 24–  7am to 11pm
Meeting point: Dunes of Tadoussac

Every morning of the Festival, you are invited to come and attend the banding of passerines, including the installation of transmitters on the Purple Finch. The accumulated data are particularly important for understanding bird migration and population trends. An ornithologist guide is on site to explain the manipulations and answer your questions. This is a unique opportunity to see wild birds up close, while learning about Tadoussac bird observatory’s research.  

Northern Saw-whet Owl ©Laetitia Desbordes

From September, 18 to September, 24 – 8pm to 9:30pm (additional performances on September 20, 21, 22 and 23 at 10-11:30 p.m.)

Rate:  $21.51 (taxes included)
Meeting point: Dunes of Tadoussac

When evening comes, we redeploy its nets to capture magnificent little owls. Thanks to this interpretation activity, lasting about 1h30, you will follow the research team in its work on these birds. 

Capacity: 20 participants

American Kestrel ©Jessé Roy-Drainville

September, 23 and September, 24 – 8 to 12am
Meeting point: Dunes of Tadoussac

The Dunes are considered as one of the best ornithological sites in Quebec to observe migrating birds of prey. If you are not familiar with the identification of raptors in flight, an experienced ornithologist will be at the Yvan-Duchesne lookout to help you target the main identification criteria. You may be lucky enough to spot a Rough-legged Hawk or a Golden Eagle. 


September, 24 – 2 to 3:30pm
Meeting point: Cap-De-Bon-Désir

Guided by experienced ornithologists from the Tadoussac Bird Observatory, come and discover the pelagic and coastal birds that pass by the site with surprising proximity. Armed with your binoculars and spotting scope, follow the advice of this experienced team to learn more about the incredible diversity of the St. Lawrence River. Don’t be surprised if, while following a flying bird, you also catch a glimpse of the dorsal fin of a Minke whale or a Harbour porpoise, both abundant in this area.

Parasitic Jaeger and Black-legged Kittiwake ©David Turgeon

From September, 18 to September, 24 – 8:30-11:00 a.m.

Duration: approximately 2h30

The Festival is partnering with Croisières Neptune this year to offer unique cruises on the St. Lawrence river. You will have the opportunity to observe species such as the Common Murre or the Parasitic Jaeger from a surprising proximity. On the other hand, you will have the opportunity to see rarities such as the Sabine’s Gull, the Little Gull, the Broad-billed Phalaropes, etc. Moreover, marine mammals are very present at this time of year. 

Meeting point : Croisières Neptune ticket office
Rate : 101.2$ (taxes included)
Capacity : 25 participants


Departure :
September, 23
– 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Duration : approximately 7h

The Upper North Shore (Haute-Côte-Nord) region is certainly one of the best areas in Quebec for observing waterfowl during the migration period. The diversity of species and the abundance of birds that can be found in September is hardly comparable to the rest of the province. 

During this day, you will have the opportunity to discover strategic sites. We will stop at the following places : Escoumins Bay, Pointe-à-Émile and Pointe-à-Boisvert (Longue-Rive) and Pointe-des-Fortins. 

Level of difficulty : Intermediate
Meeting point : Sainte-Croix Church parking (Tadoussac)
Rate : 75.9$ or take advantage of the meal package for 94.88$ (taxes included)
Capacity : 30 participants


September, 23 and September, 24
– 8-10 a.m.

Duration : approximately 2h

We offer two guided hikes in the heart of Tadoussac that will allow you to meet the avian wildlife in an idyllic setting. While walking about 3 kilometers, you will be able to observe forest species (warblers, sparrows,etc.) as well as sea ducks, shorebirds and larids. The ornithological potential of this hike may surprise many! 

Level of difficulty : Easy
Meeting point : Pointe de l’Islet trail entrance at the Tadoussac wharf
Rate : 25.3 $ (taxes included)
Capacity : 20 participants

The Côte-Nord Migratory Bird Festival also offers entertainment, conferences and documentary screenings!