Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.
 

Aug 7, 05 Farallon Islands Trip Report

Expand Messages
  • Debi Shearwater
    Howdy, Seabirders, Shearwater Journeys kicked off the fall pelagic season with a wildly successful pelagic trip to the Farallon Islands on August 7, 2005,
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 8 1:30 PM
      Howdy, Seabirders,

      Shearwater Journeys kicked off the fall pelagic season with a wildly
      successful pelagic trip to the Farallon Islands on August 7, 2005,
      yesterday. Highlights of the trip were: TUFTED PUFFINS, as expected,
      hundreds of CASSIN'S AUKLETS, a LONG-TAILED JAEGER, a SOUTH POLAR SKUA,
      HUMPBACK WHALES, one GRAY WHALE, and the Grande Finale‹two ORCAS FLIPPING A
      YOUNG CALIFORNIA SEA LION IN THE AIR and killing it!!

      If you have read the newspaper accounts of reports of the lack of krill
      along the California coast line, and if it made you think that there are "no
      birds out there"‹then, read on! Of course there are birds "out there." In
      addition, I include the OFFSHORE REPORT.

      Since this trip was so popular, we added a second boat, which also sold out.
      Leaders on the two boats were: Alan Hopkins, Luke Cole, Steve Howell, Debi
      Shearwater, & Al Jaramillo. We departed from Sausalito, as usual, passing
      under the Golden Gate Bridge. A few ELEGANT TERNS were in the harbor. Once
      beyond the bridge, we spotted several HARBOR PORPOISES. The fog gave way to
      uniformly, high overcast skies, the perfect seabirding conditions at the
      Farallon Islands.

      The first TUFTED PUFFIN was spotted a few miles short of the islands. At the
      islands, we found more puffins, along with many CASSIN'S AUKLETS that
      allowed knock-out views only a few feet from our boat. Normally, these
      auklets are seen flying away from vessels at a distance. So, this was a
      great photo op, as well. We had lunch at the islands while many of the
      breeding seabirds flew around us: PIGEON GUILLEMOTS, COMMON MURRES;
      DOUBLE-CRESTED, BRANDT'S, and PELAGIC CORMORANTS. A single GRAY WHALE
      surfaced near us, while we had already seen breaching and flipper-slapping
      HUMPBACKS.

      After lunch, we knew we were near the edge of the continental shelf when the
      first of several BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSSES flew up our wake. Numbers of SOOTY
      and PINK-FOOTED SHEARWATERS increased, while the occassional RED-NECKED
      PHALAROPE flew by. RHINOCEROS AUKLETS were more abundant at the shelf break,
      too. DALL'S PORPOISES announced their presence by putting up their
      characterisitic "rooster-tail" spray. Suddenly, a "WILSON'S STORM-PETREL"
      flew very quickly past the boat. Well, it was a "white-rumped" storm-petrel,
      assumed to be Wilson's. Definitely not the "typical" Leach's. So, we put out
      an oil slick, but the storm-petrel never returned.

      We were headed for the dock, when skipper, Roger Thomas, gunned the engines.
      Standing at the stern, the leaders eye-balled each other, as it we knew it
      had to be the sound of engines in pursuit of a sightning of ORCAS. Sure
      enough! We arrived at the scene to find two orcas, one adult male, and the
      other a female, or young male, in hot pursuit of a young California Sea
      Lion. The two orcas circled the sea lion, eventually grabbing it and
      flipping it into the air several times!! What a show. It is very rare to see
      such an event. Everyone was in awe. Look for digital images to be posted on
      the Shearwater Journey's web site later this week! While we were watching
      the orca show, a LONG-TAILED JAEGER flew in to join the chummed gulls at the
      stern. On our return trip, a SOUTH POLAR SKUA, did the same!

      Our 2006 trip to the Farallon Islands is set for Sunday, August 6. Please
      sign up early, as this trip sells out every year.

      OFFSHORE REPORT: Researchers offshore 200-300 miles due W of Sand Francisco
      on August 6 reported the usual slow seabirding for that distance, but
      recorded: 15-25 COOK'S PETRELS/day, 2 late MURPHY'S PETRELS, 1-2 DARK-RUMPED
      PETRELS, and 1 probable STEJNEGER'S. Also, 1 RED-TAILED TROPICBIRD. Reports
      from our skipper in Monterey are that thousands of Cassin's Auklets were in
      the bay along with some murrelets. THERE ARE SEABIRDS OUT THERE!!

      Upcoming trips/leaders this season include:
      Aug 12 from Monterey with Jennifer Green, Nikolas Haass, Bert McKee, & Debra
      Shearwater
      Aug 14 from Fort Bragg with Luke Cole, Alan Hopkins, Nikolas Haass, Steve
      Howell, Bert McKee, John Sterling, Matt Brady, David Vander Pluym, & Debi
      Shearwater
      Aug 16 from Bodega Bay with Luke Cole, Bert McKee, Steve Howell, Todd
      McGrath, & Debi Shearwater
      Aug 21 from Monterey with Mike Danzenbaker, Jennifer Green, Ted Chandik,
      Bert McKee & David Vander Plym
      Aug 26 from Fort Bragg with Jim Danzenbaker, Luke Cole, Jennifer Green,
      Steve Howell, Bert McKee & Debi Shearwater
      Aug 27 from Fort Bragg with Jim Danzenbaker, Luke Cole, Steve Howell, Bert
      McKee, & Debi Shearwater
      Aug 28 from Monterey with Jennifer Green & Denise Wight
      Aug 29 from Bodega Bay with Peter Pyle, Jim Danzenbaker, Luke Cole, Steve
      Howell, Al Jaramillo, & Debi Shearwater
      Sep 4 from Monterey with Jim Danzenbaker, Scott Terrill, & Debi Shearwater
      Sep 9 from Bodega Bay with Steve Howell, Peter Pyle, Lisa Hug, Mike
      Danzenbaker & Debi Shearwater
      Sep 10 from Monterey with Jennifer Green & Debi Shearwater (limited spaces
      open)
      Sep 11 albacore trip from Monterey with Mike Danzenbaker, Denise Wight,
      Scott Terrill, Linda Terrill & Debi Shearwater
      Sep 12 from Monterey with Debi Shearwater
      Sep 16 from Bodega Bay with Steve Howell, Peter Pyle, Lisa Hug, Jennifer
      Green, & Debi Shearwater
      Sep 18 from Fort Bragg with Lisa Hug, Peter Pyle, & Debi Shearwater
      Sep 23 from Monterey with Mike Danzenbaker, Steve Howell, Jennifer Green,
      Scott Terrill, Linda Terrill, & Debi Shearwater
      Sep 24 from Monterey with Jim Danzenbaker, Nikolas Haass, Denise Wight, &
      Debi Shearwater
      Sep 25 from Bodega Bay with Alan Hopkins, Mike Danzenbaker, Jim Danzenbaker,
      Luke Cole, Nikolas Haass, Steve Howell, Peter Pyle, & Debi Shearwater (very
      few spaces open)
      Sep 30 from Monterey with Jennifer Green & Debi Shearwater
      Oct 1 albacore grounds from Monterey with Brian Sullivan, David Vander
      Pluym, & Debi Shearwater
      Oct 2 from Monterey with Jennifer Green, Mike Danzenbaker, Matt Brady, Brian
      Sullivn, & Debi Shearwater (limited spaces available)
      Oct 7 from Monterey with Mike Danzenbaker, Jennifer Green, Denise Wight, &
      Debi Shearwater
      Oct 8 from Monterey with Alan Hopkins, Nikolas Haass, & Debi Shearwater
      Oct 9 albacore grounds from Monterey with Nikolas Haass, Jennifer Green,
      Matt Brady, David Vander Pluym, & Debi Shearwater
      Oct 10 from Bodega Bay with Peter Pyle, Lisa Hug, & Debi Shearwater
      Oct 11 from Monterey with Luke Cole & Debi Shearwater
      Oct 14 from Bodega Bay with Luke Cole, Steve Howell, Peter Pyle, Jennifer
      Green, Lisa Hug, & Debi Shearwater
      Oct 16 from Fort Bragg with Steve Howell, Peter Pyle, Lisa Hug, Luke Cole,
      Linda Terrill, Scott Terrill, David Vander Pluym, & Debi Shearwater

      Additional leaders/chummers may be added to some trips.

      RESERVATIONS: After August 12th, I will be out of my office until August
      30th, either on a boat, driving to a boat trip, or at the British Bird Fair
      (Marquee 4, Stand 92). If you would like to make a reservation for the
      AUGUST 21, 26, 27, or 29th trips, please contact Jennifer Green at
      831/479-3521 and leave a message on her answering machine before 9 pm. ONLY
      contact Jennifer for these dates, and only after August 12th. I will return
      to the office on August 30th, and you can reach me, either by phone or email
      on that day. If you would like to sign up for any trips in September or
      October, please send your check or money order to: PO Box 190, Hollister, CA
      95024.

      The full list of species for the August 7, 2005 pelagic trip follows:

      WESTERN GREBE-1
      BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSS-6
      NORTHERN FULMAR-1
      PINK-FOOTED SHEARWATER-180
      SOOTY SHEARWATER-5000+
      "WILSON'S STORM-PETREL"-1
      BROWN PELICAN-+
      BRANDT'S CORMORANT-+
      DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT-+
      PELAGIC CORMORANT-+
      SURF SCOTER-1
      BLACK OYSTERCATCHER-2
      BLACK TURNSTONE-2
      LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER-3
      RED-NECKED PHALAROPE-15
      SOUTH POLAR SKUA-1
      LONG-TAILED JAEGER-1
      HEERMANN'S GULL-2
      CALIFORNIA GULL-100
      WESTERN GULL-++
      ELEGANT TERN-10
      CASPIAN TERN-1
      COMMON MURRE-1000's
      PIGEON GUILLEMOT-50
      CASSIN'S AUKLET-300
      RHINOCEROS AUKLET-60
      TUFTED PUFFIN-6
      CALIFORNIA SEA LION-+ (-one)
      HARBOR SEAL-+
      GRAY WHALE-1
      HUMPBACK WHALE-5-6
      ORCA-2 (One adult male, one young male/female)
      HARBOR PORPOISE-10
      DALL'S PORPOISE-10
      BLUE SHARK-1

      Many thanks to all who participated.
      Shearwaters forever, & storm-petrels, too,
      Debi
      ---
      http://www.shearwaterjourneys.com
      Debi Shearwater <debiluv@...>
      Shearwater Journeys
      P.O. Box 190
      Hollister, CA 95024
      831-637-8527
    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.