Monterey Seabirds
April 16, 2011 Seabird Cruise Trip Report


Saturday April 16, 2011

As you will see from Don Roberson's eBird report below, the weather was less than ideal. Unseasonal thick fog made seeing birds or marine mammals a challenge.

To the rescue came a male transient type Killer Whale that wanted to get up close and personal with us. He appeared out of nowhere and proceeded to parallel us, coming in close and touching the boat. Some of the folks at the rail reached out and were just a few inches shy of touching his six foot tall dorsal fin!

It was an incredible experience for all of us on board.

While I was trying to figure out why my video camera wasn't working our deckhand Mike Merlo managed to shoot these videos with his phone!

Here is Don Roberson's eBird report for the day:

Observation date: 4/16/11
Notes: Monterey Seabirds trip with John Mayer skipper; with R. Wolfe, B.G. Elliott, John Sterling, leaders; Blake Matheson, the Sterling family, Don Glasco, et al. Very foggy day in MTY (this list) but sunshine at N rim area in SCZ, where we stopped for a half-hour to enjoy very close interactions with a large male Orca (see separate checklist). Some light chop, small swell, actually improved as day went on. This checklist excludes inshore birds (<1 nmi offshore). Almost birdless much of time in thick fog with fleeting glimpses of phalaropes in a.m.; better conditions and some sun on ride back 1145-1230.

Location: Monterey County
Number of species:


  Pacific Loon   6    
  Black-footed Albatross   1   mid-Bay, right near MTY/SCZ line but while we were still in fog
  Sooty Shearwater   8    
  Pelagic Cormorant   1   alt plumaged bird in flight at 9.5 nmi offshore, heading N towards Santa Cruz. This is exceptional and suggests either migration or cross-Bay movement
  Red-necked Phalarope   8    
  Red Phalarope   5    
  Bonaparte's Gull   5    
  Western Gull   100    
  California Gull   50    
  Herring Gull (American)   2   1 ad, 1 1st-cycle
  Thayer's Gull   1   1st-cycle
  Common Murre   150    
  Rhinoceros Auklet   10    
Location: Santa Cruz County
Number of species:


  Pacific Loon   2   spring migrants, alt pl
  Common Loon   1   spring migrant, alt pl
  Black-footed Albatross   2    
  Sooty Shearwater   7   1 persistently coming to chum
  Bonaparte's Gull   40    
  Western Gull   25    
  California Gull   175    
  Herring Gull (American)   1   ad
  Common Murre   80    
  Rhinoceros Auklet   5    

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2(

Roger Wolfe for Monterey Seabirds


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Last updated April 28, 2011