Orange County pelagic birding
- In anticipation of next week's Sea & Sage pelagic trip, I went out yesterday (Jul 6) on the Ocean Institute's Blue Whale Safari. We traveled essentially due south of Dana Point along the 150 fathom line and back, covering about 35 miles. Pelagic species encountered included Sooty Shearwater (20), Black-vented Shearwater (2), Pink-footed Shearwater (1), Black Storm-Petrel (8), Ashy Storm-Petrel (1; sadly, just barely in San Diego County), Cassin's Auklet (3), and Scripps's/Craveri's Murrelet (1). Marine mammals included one Blue Whale, one Fin Whale, dozens of Bottlenose Dolphins, and thousands of Common Dolphins. Next week's Sea & Sage pelagic trip is sold out, but I believe there is still space on the September 21 pelagic trip.
Regarding the failure of the nesting Black Oystercatchers on the Dana Point jetty, Captain Mike informed me that a few weeks ago they saw a large wave come up and over the jetty, sending dozens of Rock Pigeons into the harbor to their death, and indicating that they did not see the two Black Oystercatcher chicks subsequent to that event, suggesting that it was responsible for the nesting failure. He also indicated that he has seen an American-type oystercatcher on the jetty three times this spring/summer.
San Bernardino, CA
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