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709Mini-Pelagic Report - 9/27

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  • Matthew Matthiessen
    Sep 29, 2003
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      Sat afternoon I had the opportunity to take a small boat out of Noyo
      Harbor to look at seabirds. We were only out about three hours but
      still managed to see a good assortment of birds. The sea was very calm
      and the winds were nonexistent so most of the birds we encountered were
      on the water (at least initially). COMMON MURRE numbers were huge and
      about a mile out of harbor we found ourselves floating through vast
      rafts of them. I was surprised to find the three shearwater species
      (buller's, pink-footed, and Sooty) in about equal numbers.

      It's odd for the highlight of a pelagic to occur in the harbor but on
      this trip that's exactly what happened. On our return we encountered a
      CASSIN'S AUKLET sitting on the water inside Noyo Harbor (about where we
      board the Trek II). We eased our boat up to about 15 ft from the bird
      and followed it as it paddled on the surface further into the harbor.
      We finally parted ways with it just before reaching the Coast Guard

      Species and numbers follow.

      Common Loon - 1
      Black-footed albatross - 1
      Northern Fulmar - 2
      Buller's Shearwater - 1,000+
      Pink-footed Shearwater - 1,000+
      Sooty Shearwater - 1,000+
      South Polar Skua - 2
      Pomarine Jaeger - 4
      jaeger sp - 2
      Sabine's Gull - 1
      Common Murre - 2,500+
      Cassin's Auklet - 15
      Rhinoceros Auklet - 500

      - Matthew Matthiessen