Pelagic trip report:
Saturday, August 8, 2009

11 hours
From Newport, Oregon, 35 miles W, then 10 miles S off Perpetua Bank.

Seas calm, winds to zero to 8 knots.

Boat: Misty
Captain Rob Waddell
Newport Tradewinds Charter

The Bird Guide, Inc.

Guides: Greg Gillson, Tim Shelmerdine, Russ Namitz, Shawneen Finnegan

Close looks of Cassin's Auklets were had by all. Photo by Greg Gillson.

The seas and skies were perfect--perhaps the best we've ever had. The birds were terrific, too. It was a very memorable pelagic trip.

Early in the trip we encountered a HUMPBACK WHALE. Another logging nearby was perhaps a BLUE WHALE, but it sank from view before everyone got on it.

Another bird early in the trip was a SOUTH POLAR SKUA, one of 9 for the day.

Later we spied a fishing vessel pulling in nets and found 475 BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSSES feeding on bycatch behind it. The total of 500 birds is quite high for August.

The high total of 700 FORK-TAILED STORM-PETRELS was due to the greasy-smooth waters throughout most of the day.

Sharks were everywhere, we identified 4 species, primarily BLUE SHARKS and SALMON SHARKS. Schools of bait fish were forced to the surface in several areas by ALBACORE TUNA, which sometimes jumped out of the water themselves. The PINK-FOOTED SHEARWATERS took advantage and we may have seriously underestimated the day's total.

Trip photos:

White-winged Scoter 20
Pacific Loon 1
Black-footed Albatross 500
Northern Fulmar 225
Sooty Shearwater 115
Pink-footed Shearwater 600
Buller's Shearwater 10
Fork-tailed Storm-Petrel 700
Double-crested Cormorant 15
Brandt's Cormorant 60
Pelagic Cormorant 100
Brown Pelican 35
Peregrine Falcon 1
Wandering Tattler 4
Black Turnstone 1
Least Sandpiper 1
Red Phalarope 6 (seen by few)
Red-necked Phalarope 70
Heermann's Gull 70
California Gull 300-500
Western Gull 100
Glaucous-winged Gull 3
Sabine's Gull 25
Arctic Tern 3
Common Murre 400 (nearly all parent/chick pairs)
Pigeon Guillemot 125
Marbled Murrelet 10
Cassin's Auklet 65
Rhinoceros Auklet 80
Tufted Puffin 2
South Polar Skua 9
Pomarine Jaeger 10
Parasitic Jaeger 1 (seen by few)
Long-tailed Jaeger 3

Elephant Seal 4
Steller's Sea Lion 6
Harbor Seal 15
Dall's Porpoise 15
Pacific White-sided Dolphin 10
Harbor Porpoise 25
Humpback Whale 1
whale (likely Blue Whale, seen by few) 1

Blue Shark 80
Salmon Shark 30
Soupfin Shark 2
Shortfin Mako Shark 2
Ocean Sunfish 15
Albacore Tuna 40-50

Pacific Sea Nettle 1000+
Moon Jelly 30+
other unidentified jellies

South Polar Skuas were in good numbers. Photo by Greg Gillson.