Fri, 10 Jun 2005 -- At the Mendocino headlands today Chuck Vaughn and I
found an alcid on the water near the murre/cormorant colony which we
believe is a juvenile RHINOCEROS AUKLET. It was smaller than adult Pigeon
Guillemots nearby but coloration, bill size, and bill shape indicated a
rhino. According to the literature, juvenile rhinos leave their burrows and
move to the water when they can barely fly and are only 40-85% of their
adult body weight. The presence of an undersized juvenile rhino on the
water this early in the season suggests local nesting, perhaps on the
islands of the Mendocino headlands themselves.
Further south we also visited the house on Duxbury Road near
Manchester and saw a flock of 11 EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVES fly up from behind
the house. This number should raise this newcomer species from the "x"
rating (extremely rare) to the "r" rating (rare) on the Mendocino county
Potter Valley, MEN, CA