Manitoba during winter may not sound much like a birding destination, but it is one of Canada’s best-kept birding secrets. Every winter, sought-after northern owls – Snowy, Northern Hawk- and Great Grey and Owls, emerge from their usual haunts in the depths of the woods to hunt along forest edges, roadsides, and agricultural fields only a short distance from the capital city of Winnipeg. Manitoba’s location in the north means that every winter provides chances to see these birds, and in some years their numbers can be astronomical! Add this to a backdrop of flocks of colourful winter finches and a suite of boreal specialty birds and it becomes a fantastic winter escape!

Our Manitoba tour takes us through open agricultural land where we will search for Snowy Owls in addition to Snow Bunting, Lapland Longspur, Grey Partridge, Sharp-tailed Grouse, and others, and seek species such as Eastern Screech Owl and Bohemian Waxwing in suburban parkland, and Bald and Golden Eagles and Northern Goshawk overhead. We will work our way northwards to the vast expanse of boreal forest, where we will look for Northern Hawk, Great Grey and Boreal Owl as well as Red and Two-barred Crossbills, Common and Hoary Redpolls, Pine and Evening Grosbeaks, Pine Siskin, Boreal Chickadee, Canada Jay, and others.

We visit two boreal forest parks – Riding Mountain National Park and Hecla-Grindstone Provincial Park, which offer unparalleled access into this landscape and its birds, as well as some excellent chances for elusive mammals - most notably Canada Lynx, as well as American Marten, North American Otter, Long-tailed Weasel, Gray Wolf, Red Fox, Moose and White-tailed Deer.

We have many chances to find our targets in a variety of locations, and we will be at the start of the breeding season for many of these birds, which will be singing and easier to find.

*2024 Prices are estimated and dates may change*

Top Birds

Snowy, Great Grey, Northern Hawk-, Boreal, Eastern Screech, Great Horned, Northern Saw-whet and Long-eared Owls; Snow Bunting; Lapland Longspur; Grey Partridge; Sharp-tailed & Spruce Grouse; Northern Harrier; Bald & Golden Eagles; Black-backed & American Three-toed Woodpeckers; Bohemian Waxwing; Red & Two-bared Crossbills; Common & Hoary Redpolls; Pine & Evening Grosbeaks; Pine Siskin; Boreal Chickadee; Canada Jay.

Top Mammals

Canada Lynx; Gray Wolf; American Marten; North American Otter; North American Porcupine; Moose; White-tailed Deer; Long-tailed Weasel; Red Fox.

Habitats Covered

boreal forest, agricultural fields and park land

Expected Climate

temperatures close to, or below 0°C (32°F), and there is a good possibility of snow and/or rain. Wind chill factor can further reduce your body temperature. Please dress appropriately.

Max Group Size

5 with 1 Rockjumper leader / 10 with 2 Rockjumper leaders

Tour Pace & Walking

relaxed, days are short, and we are likely be back at our accommodation by 17:00 most evenings. Optional owling after dark

Accommodation

comfortable

Ease of Birding

mostly very easy

Photographic Opportunities

good to excellent

What our clients say about us

Lev Frid
MW, Canada 2022

Our guides, Lev and Amanda, are great and I hope to go on another trip with them in the future.

Amanda Guercio
MN, Canada 2023

Lev and Amanda were fantastic as ever and handled a medical situation to the satisfaction of all. In addition to being fun, needless to say, they are superb birding and nature guidesmammals and plants included.

Amanda Guercio
YB, Canada 2022

Lev and Amanda were exceptional guides. Very knowledgeable.

Lev Frid
MR, Canada 2022

Booking, registration, organisation of the tour were all very professional, well done Rockjumper. The highlights of the tour were the magnificent observations of the Hawk Owl and the Great grey owl, one great grey could even be observed when it was hunting. For my taste we spent too much time in the cars but I admit that this is largely due to the nature of this tour. Lev and Amanda were very good guides, both having a vast knowledge of the visited habitats and animals. I very much appreciated the very competent explanations and answers to my questions.

Lev Frid
DA, Canada 2022

Excellent tour for seeing birds of the boreal forest. Lev and Amanda were excellent in helping us get great views of the warblers. Accommodation was excellent. the choice of venues was well balanced so that it was easy to stay focused and alert for birding.

Canada - Manitoba: Northern Owls 2025

20 Feb 2025 - 26 Feb 2025 (7 days)

CAD3,995 - Spaces Available

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Tour Leader: Lev Frid

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Tour Leader: Robert Wilcox

Tour price (Per person): CAD3,995 * USD2,912 * GBP2,294 * EUR2,697 * AUD4,404

Single Supplement: CAD620 * USD452 * GBP356 * EUR419 * AUD684

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