Monterey Seabirds
September 29, 2013 Seabird Cruise Trip Report


Sunday September 29, 2013

On board the Pt Sur Clipper, we had John Mayer as our skipper, Mike Merlo handling deck duties, and Richard Ternullo in the pulpit. For leaders, I was joined by Alex Rinkert, Christian Swartz, Bruce Elliott, and Don Roberson.

We had superb, sunny weather with mild sea conditions for most of the day. We ran SSW and then in towards the Big Sur Coast.

It was very birdy in the early part of the trip when we ran across a good flock of black-vented shearwaters. One small fast-flying bird that gave the impression of "Tree Swallow" flanks and crisp black-and-white contrast turned out to be a Manx Shearwater. A short time later Alex Rinkert called out a flesh-footed shearwater. We finished with 6 species of shearwater. South Polar skua and black-footed albatross rounded out our "must-get" birds of the day. The oddest sighting of the day was a pelagic flock of Marbled Godwits going by 4 miles west of Cypress Pt.

Non-bird sightings were also great. We had lots of jellies, mola mola, blue sharks, and humpback whales. Add an elephant seal, a northern fur seal, and some show-off Risso's Dolphins leaping completely out of the water, and it made for quite an eventful trip.

Birds observed:
  Canada Goose     Black Oystercatcher
  Northern Pintail     Black Turnstone
  Surf Scoter     Surfbird
  Eared Grebe     Marbled Godwit
  Pied-billed Grebe     Red-necked Phalarope
  Pacific Loon     South Polar Skua
  Black-footed Albatross      Pomarine Jaeger
  Pink-footed Shearwater     Parasitic Jaeger
  Flesh-footed Shearwater     Common Murre
  Buller's Shearwater     Pigeon Guillemot
  Sooty Shearwater     Cassin's Auklet
  Manx Shearwater     Rhinocerous Auklet
  Black-vented Shearwater     Heermann's Gull
  Brandt's Cormorant     Western Gull
  Double-crested Cormorant     California Gull
  Pelagic Cormorant     Elegant Tern
  Brown Pelican     Rock Pigeon
  Great Egret     Belted Kingfisher
  Snowy Egret     American Crow
  Black-crowned Night-Heron     Brewer's Blackbird

Tim Amaral for Monterey Seabirds


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Last updated October 9, 2013