Q. Can the Wharf Cat get as close to the whooping cranes as the smaller tour boats?

A. Yes. Our shallow draft of 4 feet allows us to get "up close and personal" with the whoopers. Combining close access and the area's highest observation deck makes for great viewing!

Q. Are children allowed on Wharf Cat Whooping Crane & Birding Boat Tours?

A. Yes, children are allowed on our tours. We do not allow any running or horseplay on the Wharf Cat. Parents are responsible for their children and must not allow them in any way to disturb the other passengers aboard the boat

Q. How long does it take to arrive at the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge aboard the Wharf Cat?

A. When departing Rockport Harbor, the trip takes approximately 45 minutes. From Port Aransas, the time is approximately 1 1/2 hours. Keep your binoculars handy, as your narrator will be pointing out many species of birds along the way.

Q. Are there restrooms on board the Wharf Cat?

A. Yes, both men's and women's facilities.

Q. Will the birding tour be narrated?

A. Yes, we are proud to have on board the area's finest birding experts.

Q. May I bring my own spotting scope?

A. Absolutely. Although we do provide scopes at no charge, you will probably be more comfortable and accustomed to your own equipment.

Q. Will the boat be stopping for viewing and photographing the whooping cranes?

A. Yes. The Wharf Cat is a catamaran with a shallow draft and can drift close to the shore. The boat captain will make several stops, allowing you to observe and photograph the crane

Q. Are reservations recommended?

A. Yes, and we are happy to reserve your trip aboard the Wharf Cat. Walk-ons are also very welcome when space is available. We suggest that you telephone us to check availability.

Q. Is food and drink available on board the Wharf Cat?

A. Yes, there is a concession with hot and cold foods and drinks served in our heated, air conditioned cabin that can seat up to 84 people. No outside food, drink or coolers allowed.

Q. Are pets allowed on Wharf Cat birding tours?

A. No pets are allowed. Should this present a problem for travelers, we can provide you phone numbers for local kennels where you can leave your pet while you tour with us.

Q. Will I get seasick?

A. There are no guarantees that you won't, but the Wharf Cat is a 75' catamaran that provides an extremely smooth ride and the trip to the refuge does not go into the gulf, therefore the seas are much calmer. If you think that you might experience seasickness, there are over the counter and prescription drugs available for this condition and Fisherman's Wharf recommends you consult a physician before using them.

Q. How long before departure should I arrive?

A. Plan to arrive at least 30 minutes before departure time. There is a U.S.C.G. required safety meeting 15 minutes before departure and all customers must attend this meeting before boarding the boat.

Q. What should I bring?

A. Binoculars, scopes and cameras, hats, sunglasses, sunscreen and money for the concession. Depending on weather conditions, a jacket or coat, as the temperature is cooler on the water. Dressing in layers is recommended, for cooler mornings that warm up quickly.

Q. Is there a place to get out of the weather while on board the Wharf Cat?

A. Yes, there is a heated, air conditioned cabin with windows for viewing that seats 84 people.

Q. Are major credit cards accepted?

A. Yes.

Q. Are group rates available?

A. Yes, we offer group rates, with a minimum of 10 people required for a
group rate. With larger groups, the discount increases and on all group
rates, one person must pay for the entire group. Please call 800-782-2473
for more information.

Q. If it is raining, will the trip be canceled?

A. No. Actually, some of the bad weather days are the best birding days. The Wharf Cat does have a large, enclosed cabin with windows for viewing.

Q. Are gratuities for the crew and narrator included with my ticket?

A. No, but they all work very hard to provide you with a great birding experience and appreciate your tips.


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