Wednesday, January 30 at 7:00 pm
In this first of two programs on Islands, Bill Gette, former head of Mass Audubon’s Joppa Flats Education Center, takes us to St. Paul Island (Pribilof Islands) in Alaska. The Pribilof Islands are located in the Bering Sea just north of the Aleutian Islands chain.
In June 2018, Bill Gette led a natural history travel program to Saint Paul.  Just getting to Saint Paul can often be a challenge due to a limited flight schedule and frequent bad weather.  Once there, however, Saint Paul is a wonderland for naturalists.

During his PowerPoint presentation, Bill will take you to the sea cliffs at Ridge Wall and High Bluffs.  These precipitous rock faces are the perfect nesting places for a variety of seabirds, including Common Murre, Thick-billed Murre, Least Auklet, Parakeet Auklet, Tufted Puffin, Horned Puffin, and Northern Fulmar.  Bill will also show you Red-faced Cormorants and Red-legged Kittiwakes.  Red-legged Kittiwakes, small gulls, are one of the most difficult birds in North America to see.  They nest on the Pribilof Islands and at a few sites in the Aleutians and winter at sea close to their breeding colonies.

Bill will take you for a walk across the tundra to see a wide variety of wildflowers, including the ubiquitous Nootka Lupine, Whorled Lousewort, Weasel Snout, Arctic Poppy, and Chocolate Lily.  Birds typical of the tundra include Snow Bunting, Lapland Longspur, Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, and Rock Sandpiper.

The talk concludes with a visit to Saints Peter and Paul Russian Orthodox Church, a distinctive landmark on Saint Paul.  The church contains beautiful religious art and relics of both saints.

For more information, please contact the Reference Desk at 781-246-6334 x2, or e-mail us at