NOVEMBER 29, 2018 — As part of Nature NB’s annual Festival of Nature, Cheryl Morel and Vicki Daley won the chance to spend two days in Grand Manan with award-winning naturalist Jim Wilson and his wife, Jean Wilson after bidding at the silent auction. Morel and Daley were ecstatic about their experiences with the Wilson’s, and they learned a great deal about New Brunswick’s environment and wildlife in the region.

“Jim and Jean were warm, gracious and patient, and we shared good food, wine and small chat when not birding.” Said Morel, “I even got a lesson in adjusting binoculars that made the world of difference for me.”

The silent auction fundraiser is a fun-filled event that gives participants the chance to bid on experience giveaways, such as Morel and Daley’s birding excursion with the Wilsons. Winners of the auction can expect to go on some amazing trips and adventures with scientists and knowledgeable naturalists to beautiful regions throughout New Brunswick.

Morel and Daley had the opportunity to go bird-watching and see some of the beautiful species that Grand Manan had to offer, such as geese, warblers, sparrows, hunting merlins, eagles and migrating northern flickers.

Their adventures with the Wilsons were not all fun and games according to Daley. “He indicated we had to work for our supper, a delicious turkey dinner.” Said Daley, “As it turned out, he had captured a Monarch Butterfly that needed tagging.  It was a new experience for Cheryl and I.  Needless to say, we didn’t consider it work and were thrilled with the opportunity to take part.”

Morel and Daley also managed to see porpoises and whales along the beautiful coast of Grand Manan as well. They were treated to some wonderful food, some amazing sights, and some great company and new experiences with Jim and Jean Wilson.

“The highlight was spending time with Jim and Jean who are so generous in sharing their knowledge about the Island and all it has to offer.” Said Morel.

The Wilsons enjoyed the company of Daley and Morel as well. “Cheryl and Vicki were delightful guests and we really enjoyed their company. They fully embraced the experience and shared their enthusiasm, interest in nature, knowledge of wine and interesting stories of travel and other experiences.” Said Jim Wilson.

Jim Wilson said that it is difficult to determine how successful their birding and sightseeing will be, but they will be always be able to offer some great company and tasty food regardless. “Over the years, each has been fun and unique and has offered the opportunity to get to know our guests in a more personal way than would be possible during an ordinary birding encounter.” Said Wilson, “They’ve always been great experiences for us, even though we never know who our guests will be until the bidding is over and the winners are announced.”

“Our time on Grand Manan with Jim and Jean was informative, fun, relaxing and very peaceful.” Said Daley, “We will definitely return to bird with friends.”

Interested in experiences like this? Join us at our next Festival of Nature, being help in St. Andrews, June 2019!

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