Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Tuesday June 2, 2020 by Kate Sutherland

I know...June 2?  That wasn't on the Baby Blitz schedule!  But we had a group from Missouri that drove to Hatteras to go offshore for a couple of trips, the first was Monday June 1 and the second Thursday June 4.  Brian looked at the long range forecast and was worried that we might not make our trip on Thursday so he offered to add a day for them.  We recruited a few of our Blitz participants and one of our Thursday participants and made it a go!  There wasn't much wind in the morning and we steamed offshore, our first Trindade Petrel, dark morph, flew in to the slick before 0900.  (Kate Sutherland) 
Less than two hours later, we had another, different dark morph individual!  And in between?  We had a distant look at a Red-billed Tropicbird.  In spite of the light winds we had some good birding, perhaps due to the easterly swell that was rolling our way.  We had a nice look at an Arctic Tern, two Pomarine Jaegers, and a gorgeous Long-tailed Jaeger.  Our Black-capped Petrels chased the Poms and when the Long-tail came in it started dogging one as well, they just couldn't get a break.  The wind began to pick up early in the afternoon from the southwest and our slick became a popular place for Great and Sooty Shearwaters - a few Black-cappeds came to check it out as well.  Two Black-cappeds even came in once we were back on the shelf.  It was another exciting day offshore from Hatteras, and we're back at it again tomorrow...weather permitting!  We'll keep you posted!

All photos today by Kate Sutherland

Species List June 2, 2020
Trindade Petrel - 2
Black-capped Petrel - 18 to 19
Cory's Shearwater - 123
Scopoli's Shearwater - 4
Cory's type - 6
Great Shearwater - 36 to 39
Sooty Shearwater - 11 to 12
Audubon's Shearwater - 17
Wilson's Storm-Petrel - 130
Leach's Storm-Petrel - 6
Band-rumped Storm-Petrel - 3
Leach's / Band-rumped sp - 1
Red-billed Tropicbird - 1
Arctic Tern - 1
Common Tern - 
Common / Arctic Tern - 1
Pomarine Jaeger - 1
Long-tailed Jaeger - 1
Pom / Parasitic sp - 1
Barn Swallow - 1
swallow sp - 1
Gervais' beaked whale - 6 to 8
Offshore bottlenose dolphin - 32
Portuguese Man of War - 4

Not every day you can capture the artistic reflection of a Trindade Petrel on the sea
We saw at least two white-faced Black-capped Petrels over the course of the day
Great Shearwaters were following us and diving, so the second photo was something often seen!
One of the Pomarine Jaegers we saw, not quite an adult but getting close!  This bird stayed with us for hours.
Long-tailed Jaeger that chased the Pom!
There are four animals in this photo!  It might take me awhile, but hopefully I can do some comparisons and get a maximum number of individuals.
The offshore bottlenose dolphins we saw enjoyed riding in our wake!
And a dreamy looking Portuguese Man of War...did we say the seas were calm in the morning?  Almost glassy, but not quite!

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