Southeast Alaska Birding Trail Yakutat

Yakutat Bay

Accessible by boat

The waters of Yakutat Bay are relatively sheltered and during calm weather can be good for bird viewing; use caution, however, because weather conditions can change quickly. Look for Marbled and Kittlitz’s Murrelet; sea ducks including scoters, Harlequin Duck, and Barrow’s Goldeneye; cormorants; and occasionally other pelagic species. The rocky shoreline also might be good for turnstones and other shorebirds. Areas with foraging flocks of gulls and terns are also likely to include marine mammals such as sea otters, harbor seals, humpback whales, and sea lions. Watch for Sitka black-tailed deer on the island beaches. Mountain views are spectacular on clear days.


Yakutat Bay is accessible primarily by boat, and most trips leave from the Yakutat Boat Harbor. Most tours designed for fishing trips or glacier viewing also would be suitable for birdwatching. Alternative kayak launch sites include Sandy Beach or Sawmill Cove. Kayakers are advised to use caution in open water and keep an eye on weather and changing conditions.

Red-throated Loon. Photo: Mick Thompson

Birding Resources:

eBird Hotspot: None

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