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Bird Watchers Private Charter


    • King Shags
  • Orange Fronted Kakariki
  • Small Group Tours
  • Expert Guides
  • 95% + Success Rate with King Shags
  • HELP Save the Endangered Species (Taonga)

    See how your money gets used for Local Conservation

    Tour info in brief

    4 hours
    0800 AM
    Pricing: Adult: $1750
    Location: 1 Wellington Street , Picton
    Briefing: 0745 AM

    No Seasickness Guarantee

    FREE Photos

    About the Tour


    Bird Watchers Private Charter

    For Birding Watching Groups or Clubs 

    This specialised experience focuses on two Critically Endangered species – the New Zealand King Shag and the Orange Fronted Kakariki, New Zealand’s rarest bush bird Lots of other species are also encountered on the cruise through the beautiful calm waters of Queen Charlotte Sound to our predator-free bird sanctuary islands.

    Note there is no jetty or pier onto the island, so you may end up with wet feet jumping on and off the vessel – but it’s worth it for the experience!

    Departs Picton at 08:00 for a 4-hour-long search for our rare and Critically Endangered species ,the King Shag (taonga) and Orange Fronted kakriki, only found here in Marlborough.

    There are just 830 of the King Shags on the planet, but we have 99.9% success rate finding them on the way to Blumine Island. You have one of our specially trained Captains to guide you and make the photos perfect. Fifty years combines local Knowledge. 🙂 

    Blumine Island, our next stop is THE place to see the incredibly rare Orange Fronted Kakariki. We have a 90% success rate finding this elusive bird and bird watchers from all over the world come here to see (and usually photograph) this prized species. We Sponsor this program and put the original 54 birds on their years ago. Now up to 6 generations later they have adapted to us and the island conditions and are now being translocated to other areas in NZ. A great Success story.  

    Before we drop you off on the island we will share our secret method for successful spotting with you. After your time on the island we will pick you up at 11:00 for a cruise back to Picton as we search for dolphins and other wildlife before returning you safely to shore by 12:30.

    We also supply biscuits and hot drinks on this tour. 

    • Briefing: 0745 
    • Duration: 4 hours


    • Adult: (16+ years) $1750 incl GST 
    • Maximum 14 passengers

    All our birdwatchers tours are only available through phone or email bookings – contact us and we’ll take care of you.

    King Shag only found in Marlborough Orange Fronted Kakriki Yellow Crowned kakariki in birdbath South Island Saddle back washing on motuara island


    What to expect

    Orange-Fronted Kakariki, New Zealand’s rarest bush bird – 90% success ( only 300)

    King Shag ( only 830 worldwide ) Close encounters with Bird Species and great commentary.

    Dolphins Often and lots of other Endangered Bird Species 🙂 

    What to bring

    Camera Equipment- Cellphone will do as we get close 🙂 

    Binoculars Sunscreen

    Sunhat and sunglasses

    Bird Species book


    Where are we?

    We are located conveniently on Picton’s main waterfront with car parking close by and only a 1-minute walk from the main street.

    Just look for the Dusky Dolphin outside our shop.

    Before your tour starts feel free to take a seat inside the shop or outside on our sun drenched deck and enjoy the stunning views.

    Customers can also get online with our free WiFi, and purchase a tea or coffee to enjoy on the deck.

    You will Never Miss your Ferry

    Our tour schedules are integrated with the Interislander – so there is no chance that you’ll miss your ferry.

    What people are saying about us

    “Totally awesome Eco tour”

    Facebook -5 Star ***** Ria Migaloo reviewed E-Ko Tours – April 6, Totally awesome Eco tour, i so loved seeing all the amazing bird life It was truly the best day ever 🙂 ohh and to see the Hectors too was just icing on the cake. Only sorry that I couldn’t stay longer but i,ll be back 🙂 Bless

    “Quality Wildlife Tour”

    Trip Advisor – 5 Star***** – 23 May 2017 We were lucky enough to head out with e-Ko Tours recently on a perfect late autumn day with not a cloud in the sky. We’d considered carefully which cruise company to go with and were not disappointed… The boat was well appointed and comfortable with space for everyone to move around easily. Paul, the skipper, was friendly and fun to chat to and Tristram, our guide, was superbly knowledgeable about everything we saw during our 4 hour trip to Motuara Island and back. Also much appreciated were the thoughtful hands up and down from boat to jetty, myself being not the agilest. Little things that make a big difference. We saw a wealth of wildlife whilst on our trip – 2 species of dolphin, the Hector’s were absolutely delightful as they played right around the boat, rolling to look up at us! And fur seals, rare shags, petrels, gannets, moon jellyfish, and on the island – Saddlebacks, Black Robins, Bellbirds, Wax-eyes, Fantails, and Kakariki. I advise sitting quietly by the “bird bath” – water source where the birdlife comes to bathe and drink – for best viewing of birds. It was incredible to listen to the birdsong in the bush, something that is sadly a thing of the past in so many places. Thank goodness for predator-free sanctuaries such as this. It was a most memorable day and I thoroughly recommend e-Ko Tours to all.

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