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NOV 29, 2008: A GREAT DAY FOR SHEARWATERS

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  • Debra Shearwater
    Hello, Seabirders, Shearwater Journeys last trip of the year took place on November 29th, departing from Fisherman s Wharf in Monterey. It was a great day for
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 1, 2008
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      Hello, Seabirders,

      Shearwater Journeys' last trip of the year took place on November
      29th, departing from Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey. It was a great
      day for shearwaters, with a constant flow of shearwaters in view
      throughout the entire day, except for a brief period when we went
      over a shallow shelf that was loaded with CASSIN'S AUKLETS and quite
      a few ANCIENT MURRELETS. In all, we tallied seven species of
      shearwaters! (The one day world record is eight species, which
      Shearwater Journeys holds from two different trips). Topping the
      list, was a GREATER SHEARWATER spotted and identified by leader Scott
      Terrill, simultaneously by leader Linda Terrill. The Great Shearwater
      was not that close to the boat, but most everyone on board managed to
      see it. I was in the cabin, along with leaders John Sterling and Clay
      Kempf. I ran out to the stern, and had brief, but great views of the
      shearwater as it flew away from us. It was a state and county bird
      for county listing czar, John Sterling. Amazingly, Brian Sullivan
      managed to get off some good shots with his awesome camera! This is
      the fifth or sixth Great Shearwater that I have seen in California. I
      believe that it is the first one that I've seen in November. Another
      surprise was a single BULLER'S SHEARWATER, somewhat late (latest date
      that I have seen one is December 1). A distant FLESH-FOOTED
      SHEARWATER, single SHORT-TAILED SHEARWATER, plenty of PINK-FOOTED
      SHEARWATERS and many BLACK-VENTED SHEARWATERS were also found. Other
      early winter specialties, ANCIENT MURRELETS and BLACK-LEGGED
      KITTIWAKES made a nice showing, along with BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSSES.
      Very few NORTHERN FULMARS were recorded. And, as is often the case,
      few cetaceans, save a handful of PACIFIC WHITE-SIDED DOLPHINS near
      the end of the day, bow-riding. No phalaropes were found.

      The morning started out auspiciously for me, waking to a dream of a
      running mountain lion, followed by a real earthquake, and then "pink
      sky in the morning" on my drive to Monterey. So, it was one of those
      days where I just "had a feeling." We went south from Point Pinos to
      the Big Sur Lighthouse, staying mostly 3-4 miles offshore the entire
      day. I haven't been that far south in a long time. The coastline was
      just magnificent. There was a northeast wind in the morning of about
      10 knots, which laid down completely in the afternoon. Heading south
      was a great idea, as it turned out.

      This trip completes our 2008 year of pelagic trips in California. We
      would like to thank all of the birders who came from near and far to
      see the splendors of our special marine life off the California
      central coast. We hope to see you in the coming year. The leaders on
      the November 29 trip were: Scott Terrill, Linda Terrill, Clay Kempf,
      John Sterling, Jennifer Green, Brian Sullivan, and Debra Shearwater.

      Start off the New Year with our January 17th pelagic trip from
      Monterey. Please note, Debra Shearwater will only be available by
      email during the month of December.

      The complete species list for NOVEMBER 29, 2008 follows:

      RED-THROATED LO0N-1
      PACIFIC LOON- 225
      COMMON LOON- 10
      EARED GREBE- 15
      WESTERN GREBE- 15
      BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSS- 21
      NORTHERN FULMAR- 5
      PINK-FOOTED SHEARWATER- 125
      FLESH-FOOTED SHEARWATER- 1
      **GREATER SHEARWATER- 1
      BULLER'S SHEARWATER- 1
      SOOTY SHEARWATER- 27
      SHORT-TAILED SHEARWATER- 1
      BLACK-VENTED SHEARWATER- 1250
      BROWN PELICAN- +
      BRANDT'S CORMORANT- +
      PELAGIC CORMORANT- 3
      SURF SCOTER- 140
      RED-BREASTED MERGANSER- 3
      BRANT- 9
      BLACK TURNSTONE- 1
      POMARINE JAEGER- 9
      BONAPARTE'S GULL- 1
      HEERMANN'S GULL- 200
      MEW GULL- 4
      CALIFORNIA GULL- 150
      HERRING GULL- 4
      THAYER'S GULL- 2
      WESTERN GULL- 200
      GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL- 15
      WESTERN/GLAUCOUS-WINGED- 3
      BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKE- 26
      COMMON MURRE- 20
      ANCIENT MURRELET- 33
      CASSIN'S AUKLET- 320
      RHINOCEROS AUKLET- 145
      PEREGRINE FALCON- 1, on the radio tower on Cannery Row
      SEA OTTER- 8
      CALIFORNIA SEA LION- 50
      PACIFIC WHITE-SIDED DOLPHIN- 30
      BLUE SHARK- 1

      Wishing you a joyful holiday season,

      Debra

      Debra Shearwater
      Shearwater Journeys, Inc.
      PO Box 190
      Hollister, CA 95024
      831.637.8527
      debi@...
      www.shearwaterjourneys.com

      *Antarctica, South Georgia, & The Falkland Islands, January 5-24, 2010*
      Shearwater Journeys' Exclusive Charter






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