Santa Barbara Pelagic Report - 247 miles 237 Cook's
Guests flew in from as far away as New Jersey and Delaware for our June 12 Cook's Petrel chase trip. We covered a whopping 247 miles heading out the the shelf edge, south to just east of the San Juan Seamount and back to Santa Barbara.
The highlights were spectacular views of 237 Cook's, with many seen on the water, and one large swirling flock of over 50, as well as smashing looks at hundreds of Leach's Storm-petrels, including one summer-breeding Guadalupe susbspecies that is a good candidate for eventual splitting. Black and Ashy storm-petrels, a few late Sabine's Gulls and Arctic Terns, Black-footed Albatross, Sooty and Pink-footed Shearwaters, as well as Red Phalaropes were some of the other highlights.
our 237 breaks the one day Cook's Petrel record of 173 set just a few weeks ago on the Grande. That broke Debi Shearwater's record 138 last July.
Debi was a guest leader on our trip yesterday, so her good Karma was definitely a major factor in our success. Looking at Debi's full slate of trips this summer and fall, I'm not sure our record will last long. Even if Shearwater Journeys doesn't take back the crown, I know there will be lots of great birds seen on Debi's trips this fall.
She has added some trips out of Half Moon Bay, which should be great. Her August Fort Bragg trips have produced more Hawaiian Petrels per trip than any other trip in North America (I have seen two in about 5 August trips with Debi.) Last year's trips were sidelined to due a mechanical issue with the boat, but Debi has informed me that the boat is back and ready to go. I will be guest leading these trips this year, and I am very excited to be out there. visit shearwaterjourneys.com for a full schedule
We have one more deepwater trip on the Condor Express this year, on July 31. Last July this trip produced 132 Cook's, and I am hopeful the Cook's will still be around. This trip is about half-booked, and I expect it to sell out so call 888.77Whale to reserve a spot. We meet at 630AM and leave at 7OO AM for a 13-14 hour pelagic that spends lots of time in the deep water where Cook's and other goodies lurk. Of course we have other great SoCal trips this year, see SoCalbirding.com for a full list.
S detailed trip report will be posted soon.
In addition to great birds, our trips this year have been alot of fun.
I hope you can come offshore with us, or with Shearwater Journeys sometime this fall.