Monday, May 21, 2012

Sunday May 20, 2012

Two days of strong north winds prevented us from running the first scheduled spring trip on May 19, but we were pleased with the conditions we encountered yesterday on the 20th!  Typically this wind is excellent for jaegers, Arctic Terns, Leach's Storm-Petrels, and shearwaters...and we were not disappointed.  Sooty Shearwaters were flying by soon after leaving Hatteras Inlet, and we even had a curious Pomarine Jaeger in the first hour.  0737 found us on a nice color change with about a 7 degree temperature break, and while it did not hold the shearwaters we hoped for, we did see some Red-necked Phalaropes and an Arctic Tern.  By just 1030 we had excellent views of Black-capped Petrels, Cory's, Great (!), Sooty, and Audubon's Shearwaters, Red-necked Phalaropes, Bridled & Arctic Terns, Pomarine Jaegers, a striking young dark Long-tailed Jaeger, and a loyal following of Wilson's Storm-Petrels!  A cooperative Leach's Storm-Petrel stayed long enough in the slick for all to see well, and even gave some nice photo ops.  Overall a great and busy day offshore!  We still have space on several of our upcoming trips, check our website for availability.

Black-capped Petrel   23
Cory's Shearwater   24
Great Shearwater   20-22
Sooty Shearwater   38
Audubon's Shearwater   12
Wilson's Storm-Petrel   420-450
Leach's Storm-Petrel   1
Band-rumped Storm-Petrel   1  (looked like a non molting ind.)
Red-necked Phalarope   32
Bridled Tern   2
Arctic Tern   4
Pomarine Jaeger   11
Long-tailed Jaeger   1

Atlantic Spotted Dolphins   10+
Bottlenose Dolphins   2

(and loads of flying fish!)

sharp looking Black-capped Petrel & Wilson's Storm-Petrel

Adult Great Shearwater - we saw more today than any day last spring!
Sooty Shearwater
A couple shots of the Leach's Storm-Petrel
 Pomarine Jaeger

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