Sunday, September 27, 2020

OPT 9/26/20 Pelagic -- Great Trip

Yesterday (Saturday, September 26), the forecast led me to believe that we were in for a rough trip. And we did start that way, with up to 12 foot swells, and some wind waves to boot. Fortunately, the ocean calmed down throughout the day, we found blue sky after passing through fog, and we had a pleasant trip overall. We started seeing some good birds as we headed offshore, even seeing our first South Polar Skua, Black-footed Albatross, and Flesh-footed Shearwater. About three hours into the trip, we found a small fishing fleet that included a processing ship -- seabirds follow these in clouds, and such was the case this time. We had about 1500 birds of many types. Highlights were both Laysan and Black-footed Albatross, up tp 5 skuas and all three jaegers, many shearwaters including the elegant Buller's and another rare Flesh-footed, lots of Sabine's Gulls. After an hour, we had to pry ourselves away, and start the three hour trip back to the dock in Newport. My thanks go to the friendly passengers, my great guides Russ and David, and Skipper Rob of the Misty, all of whom made this trip an exceptional one. 

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