[Tweeters] August 19 Pelagic Trip Summary

Jim Danzenbaker jdanzenbaker at gmail.com
Thu Aug 24 11:30:27 PDT 2017


Tweeters,

20 intrepid pelagic birders from as far away as Washington D.C. converged
on Westport for another Westport Seabirds trip on Saturday, August 19 in
search of albatross, shearwaters, alcids, and more. We were met with a sea
that had been roughed up a bit from wind that had built from the previous
day. However, that didn't stop us from enjoying the avian life that this
part of the Pacific has to offer.

We left the dock at 6:00 and soon encountered the numerous Sooty
Shearwaters that often congregate in large flocks. Interspersed were
Common Murres and a few Rhinoceros Auklets. Red-necked Phalaropes and
Cassin's Auklets were briefly seen although the sea conditions prevented
many from seeing these species well. We neared several fishing boats but
they didn't produce very much although we were able to add Pink-footed and
BULLER's Shearwaters and a few Black-footed Albatrosses to the day's list.
Northern Fulmars were more common than usual. A single South Polar Skua was
the only jaeger encountered during the day. California Gulls, the most
commonly encountered gull offshore, were very numerous. A few Humpback
Whales added another dimension to the scene.

Captain Phil made a wise decision to head in a more southerly direction
where there were several fishing boats on the radar and a promise of a
smoother pathway to the delight of those on board. At the edge of Willapa
Canyon in Pacific County, we found adult Sabine's Gulls heading south. The
world is a better place having these stunning gulls to look at! We found a
mega concentration of tubenoses in this are which included at least 125
Black-footed Albatrosses and many Sooty and Pink-footed Shearwaters, a few
flyby Buller's Shearwaters and some close Fork-tailed Storm-petrels. The
area held a large number of Northern Fulmars too so it was a perfect spot
for a tuberose id workshop. A beautiful and cooperative Tufted Puffin
added a little color to the scene.

A few Red Phalaropes were seen on the way back to the jetty where we saw
many Brown Pelicans, three species of Cormorants, Black Turnstones, a
Surfbird, and throngs of Heermann's Gulls. The inner harbor held the
growing flock of Marbled Godwits - now numbering around 550.

Species and numbers (keep in mind that not everyone on board saw every
species although Westport Seabirds strives to have everybody see
everything):

*Red-throated Loon - 1*
*Common Loon - 2*
*loon sp. - 1*
*Surf Scoter - 1*
*Black-footed Albatross - 190*
*Northern Fulmar - 349*
*Pink-footed Shearwater - 423*
*Sooty Shearwater - 1469*
*Buller's Shearwater - 3*
*Fork-tailed Storm-Petrel - 11*
*Brandt’s Cormorant - 32*
*Double-crested Cormorant - 11*
*Pelagic Cormorant - 20 *
*Brown Pelican - 1020*
*Marbled Godwit - 550*
*Black Turnstone - 2*
*Surfbird - 1 (on the jetty)*
*Red-necked Phalarope - 36*
*Red Phalarope - 4*

*Glaucous-winged/Western Gull - 133*
*California Gull - 1492*
*Heermann's Gull - 882*
*Sabine's Gull - 22*
*Bonaparte's Gull - 1*
*South Polar Skua - 1*

*Common Murre - 503*
*Pigeon Guillemot - 5*
*Cassin’s Auklet - 12*
*Rhinoceros Auklet - 22*
*Tufted Puffin - 1*

*Humpback Whale - 13*
*Dall's Porpoise - 10*

*Harbor Seal - 2*
*California Sea Lion - 2*
*Steller's Sea Lion - 3*

*Blue Shark - 1*
*Ocean Sunfish - 1*

Leaders on the trip were Bill Tweit, Bruce LaBar, and Jim Danzenbaker and
aided by the exceptional skills of boat personnel Captain Phil and Chris
Anderson.

The next scheduled Westport Seabirds pelagic trips are August 26, and 27
and September 2, 9, and 10. For more information on our pelagic trips,
including reservations and full schedule, please visit our website at
www.westportseabirds.com

We'll see you on the next Westport Seabirds trip!

Cheers.

Jim and the entire Westport Seabirds team.
--
Jim Danzenbaker
Battle Ground, WA
360-702-9395 <(360)%20702-9395>
jdanzenbaker at gmail.com
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