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Coronado Islands, Mexico

It was another long day yesterday. I woke up at 3:30AM to drive down to San Diego to catch the “Grande” fishing/birding pelagic boat out to the Coronado Islands in Mexican waters. The weather was magnificent as we all enjoyed a beautiful sunrise just before the boat departed at 7AM. The sea wasn’t as gracious. Just as we left the safety of the harbor the waters began getting a little choppy. Within the first hour, I observed a few people graciously donating their breakfasts to the birds at the rear of the boat. Fortunately I’m never one to get sick – I suppose it’s the fact I always take a dramamine and make sure I have plenty of food and water in my stomach throughout the day. They also say you should also get a good nights sleep and don’t drink alcohol the night before. But that’s never stopped me!

Coronado Islads
Coronado Islands

As we were leaving the harbor we were greeted with Black-vented, Sooty and Pink-footed Shearwaters later joined by several Northern Fulmars. We were surpised at not seeing any Alcids (Rhino, Cassin’s Auklet, Xantus’ Murrelet, etc.) But by mid-day we encountered at least a half dozen Xantus’ Murrelets and several Rhinoceros Auklets. Along the lines of mammals, we had a few Gray Whales, a Fin Whale heading south, lots of Common, Risso’s and Bottlenose Dolphins and many California Sea Lions.

Coronado Islads
Coronado Islands

At the Coronado Islands themselves we found 20+ Brown Boobies, many of them nesting already. There was also a Peregrine Falcon pair entertaining us with their aerial acrobatics and high speed nose dives. All the other common stuff included Black Oystercatchers (many Am./Black hybrids), Brandt’s, Pelagic and Double-crested Cormorants, lots of Brown Pelicans and many Western and California Gulls.

Pink-footed Shearwater
Pink-footed Shearwater

Peregrine Falcon
Peregrine Falcon

Peregrine Falcon
Peregrine Falcon

Northern Fulmar
Northern Fulmar

Rhinoceros Auklet
Rhinoceros Auklet

Black-legged Kittiwake
Black-legged Kittiwake

Xantus's Murrelet
Xantus’s Murrelet

Brown Booby
Brown Booby

Sooty Shearwater
Sooty Shearwater

Coronado Islads
Searching the rocks for Boobies @ Coronado Islands

Guy Mccaskie
Guy McCaskie


GPS Track
GPS Track plotted by Google Earth

 

Posted by on April 5, 2009 in Photography Adventures

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Coronados Islands – Nov 22, 2008

Nothing that out-of-the-ordinary on the Coronados Islands pelagic last saturday but I did get new photos of Black-legged Kittiwake and much better shots of Black-vented Shearwater. Also had a Peregrine Falcon do a fly-by a few miles from the islands – more than likely the same one that we see each time we visit the Coronados. As we got closer to the islands, a presumable House/White-crowned Sparrow flew up and over the boat. As we were all trying to ID the wayward sparrow, I shouted out “Where’s that Peregrine??!”. No more than 10 seconds after I shouted that, the Peregrine came out of nowhere and nailed the Sparrow!! Talk about bad luck – so much for any hopes of positively ID’ing the Peregrine’s snack.

Black-legged Kittiwake
Black-legged Kittiwake

Black-vented Shearwater
Black-vented Shearwater

Black-vented Shearwater
Black-vented Shearwater

Common Dolphin
Common Dolphin doing a back-flip

 

Posted by on November 25, 2008 in Photography Adventures

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