Osprey cruise sets sail in July

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The community is invited to a one-of-a-kind event on Coeur d’Alene Lake: the annual Osprey Cruise, sponsored by the Natural Resource Committee of the Coeur d’Alene Chamber of Commerce. It’s been said that this is the only place in the world where a wildlife cruise of this type with sightings of osprey in their native habitat can be observed.

The cruise sets sail at 9 a.m. on Saturday, July 13.

Passengers view an osprey family on the nest as we tour into Coeur d’Alene Lake’s Cougar Bay on the two-story cruise boat Mish-an-Nock, courtesy of Coeur d’Alene Cruises and Captain Carl Fus.

Dr. Wayne Melquist, retired Idaho Department of Fish and Game wildlife biologist, will climb pilings to band baby osprey chicks using a ladder on a boat to reach the nest. Melquist is one of the country’s foremost authorities on the osprey with more than 30 years of experience banding and studying osprey.

Wildlife and waterfowl experts from the BLM, Idaho Fish and Game, and Audubon provide information and answer questions. Mounted and live bird displays and other exhibits are part of the program. Wildlife specialists with IDF&G and BLM participate.

Other birds are often seen as well, often including cormorants, varieties of ducks, grebes, and eagles, which nest overlooking the protected bay.

The cruise costs $20 per adult. Children 12 and under accompanied by a paying adult are free. Family rates are $45 for two adults and 3 children up to 18 years of age. Seniors and students are $15.

The cruise is limited to make the experience enjoyable for everyone and good viewing for all, so reservations are essential.

For information and to make reservations, contact the chamber at (208) 664-3194.

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