2012-06-16 A Pelagic Trip With Dave Povey

Common Dolphin
Common Dolphin on the Open Ocean, off shore from Mission Beach and La Jolla, California.

A pelagic bird is a specialist of the deep ocean. These birds rarely approach shorelines, and when they do, it is only for nesting. Remote rocky islands are the usual places these birds nest, so the only way to meet these birds is from a boat capable of navigating 20 or more miles out to sea. Shearwaters, murres, fulmars, auklets, guillemots, albatross, boobies (or gannets) are among the pelagic birds sometimes encountered beyond our gaze from the coastline.

I went hunting creatures of the deep sea this Saturday morning. One of the best guides out at sea one could hope to find, is Dave Povey. With his knowledge of the sea inhabitants, his 21 foot boat provides a wonderful platform to find life out on the open ocean. I’ve been on charters with several dozen birders aboard and found it unsatisfying trying to elbow my way to the rail to see a bird, while hefting my heavy camera gear. In fact, I found it impossible. I ended up a deck above the crowd and unable to find a suitable angle to capture images. With only four of us on Dave’s boat, there was no ‘crush’ factor. We did not find a wealth of pelagic birds on this voyage, but the company was nice and the cetaceans we encountered added a nice element to the trip.

Sea creatures we met this day were Northern Elephant Seal, Fin Whale, Common Dolphin, Pink-Footed Shearwater, Common Bottlenose Dolphin, Sooty Shearwater.

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