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October 4th trip report - Shearwater Journeys

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  • toddamcgrath
    Calbirders: I am posting the following trip report for Debi Shearwater. Todd McGrath SKUA@MSN.COM Marina Del Rey,CA Hello, Seabirders, Just arrived home from a
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 4, 2002
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      Calbirders:

      I am posting the following trip report for Debi Shearwater.

      Todd McGrath
      SKUA@...
      Marina Del Rey,CA



      Hello, Seabirders,

      Just arrived home from a wonderful day of seabirding on Monterey
      Bay. We left the dock at our usual 7:30 am. and found 8 BLACK
      TURNSTONES and 1 SURFBIRD along the Coast Guard jetty. Five PIGEON
      GUILLEMOTS were along Cannery Row, along with 1 WESTERN GREBE and
      several EARED GREBES. ELEGANT TERNS were sitting on the kelp beds
      along the row. The usual alcids made their appearance: COMMON MURRE,
      RHINOCEROS and CASSIN'S AUKLETS. We barely made it past Point Pinos
      and the shearwaters came in a flurry: BLACK-VENTED, SOOTY, PINK-
      FOOTED, and BULLER'S! We continued to motor offshore, leaving
      behind the vast majority of the shearwaters, only to run into over
      2,000 ASHY STORM-PETRELS. Although, we scanned the flocks
      repeatedly, we could only turn up about 50 BLACK STORM-PETRELS. One
      oddity was the same leucistic Ashy Storm-Petrel that I saw on the
      September 1, 2002 trip. Two whales blew next to our vessel just as
      we were leaving the storm-petrels! We did not have great views at
      first, so we waited around in the area for them to come up again.
      While waiting, our only BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSS of the day
      flew by the boat. The whales resurfaced, and proved to be BAIRD'S
      BEAKED WHALES. Amazingly, they made a direct turn for our bow,
      allowing us to see their distinctive beaks very well! Then, Jennifer
      Green yelled, KILLER WHALES! Yes, 4-6 ORCAS were just off of our
      stern. It was the usual "pandemonium all at once" situation!
      NORTHERN FULMARS have begun to show up in very fresh plumage,
      probably blown down by the recent strong winds earlier this week. As
      we headed back to the harbor, we slammed on the breaks for knock out
      views of our third SOUTH POLAR SKUA of the day, overhead.
      (Complaints of "too close to focus"). A TUFTED PUFFIN spun through
      the wake, and kept on going. Upon arriving back at the dock, several
      birders spotted a HARLEQUIN DUCK that we had missed earlier. All in
      all, it was a delightful day, calm seas, sunshine, terrific
      seabirds, and marine mammals.

      Our next trips are: Oct 6 from Monterey (see earlier post), Oct 12
      from Monterey, Oct 13 from Santa Cruz, Oct 14 from Bodega Bay (only
      2 spaces open), Oct 19 from Monterey; and the entirely pelagic
      Christmas Bird Count on Dec 16 from Monterey. Call, or email for
      reservations.

      Debra Shearwater
      ---
      http://www.shearwaterjourneys.com
      Debi Shearwater <debiluv@...>
      Shearwater Journeys
      P.O. Box 190
      Hollister, CA 95024
      831-637-8527
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