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ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

Northern California Pelagic, 7 May 2023 (1 Viewer)

Mendobirder

Active member
United States
We have a few spaces left for an offshore trip out of Fort Bragg (Mendocino County) California on 7 May. Weather permitting we plan to get 30 miles offshore; if it's rough we should still be able to get out 10 miles to the deepwater Noyo Canyon and find plenty of Black-footed Albatrosses. Laysan Albatross is also possible and if we get really lucky, a Short-tailed. Other possibilities include Jaegers, Terns, Auklets, and perhaps Sabine's Gull on migration, and if we're lucky, perhaps a Petrel or two (Hawaiian, Murphy's or Cooks most likely). Not many trips have been run out of here in Spring so we don't really know what else might be zipping around out there.
PM me if you're interested.
 
Well we finally got lucky with near-perfect weather and sea conditions, allowing us to run SW to the edge of the continental shelf and some marine canyons. Our slicks worked like magic bird magnets. Lots (60-100) of Black-footed Albatrosses, plus eight Laysans - a large number for this area - but the birds of the day were Murphy's and Hawaiian Petrels. We counted 30+ Murphy's including some very close birds, well photographed, and four Hawaiians that came close enough to be seen well, plus a couple more distant birds. One of the Hawaiians even repeatedly visited our slick, at one point chasing a Murphy's - an exhilarating sight. This was perhaps the best Pterodroma day anyone has seen here, and we were only about 20 miles from shore.
Other interesting birds included three Pomarine Jaegers.
With all the Albatross activity we continually hoped for a Short-tailed, but none materialized. Can't say it was a disappointment, as the spectacular display of Petrels was far more than anyone hoped for!
A highlight for me was spending much of the day in the company of Peter Pyle, whose encyclopedic knowledge is matched by his generous and unassuming nature. I hope I can remember at least half of what he told me.
 
Thanks for sharing, I really appreciate your photos. To be honest, I didn't know there was so much diversity in our waters.
Well, this was an exceptional trip with those two Petrels plus all the Laysans. But the marine environment here is one of the most productive anywhere in the world and holds a lot of birds as well as marine mammals. And it's May so we caught some migrants passing through as well.
Right now we are at or near the peak for Black-footed Albatross and they can easily be seen on short trips; you could go on a fishing charter and see them.
 

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