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 Aug, 2005 - 2 e-mail(s)...



   Craveri's Murrelet
Craveri's Murrelet
Synthliboramphus craveri


   Craveri's Murrelet (Synthliboramphus craveri) - CRMU (recent eBird sightings, view CBRC records, range map
)

  1. Got Boobies? We do!! Ventura pelagic trip on 6 Oct 2018 LINK
    DATE: Oct 6, 2018 @ 10:56pm, 12 day(s) ago
    We had a very successful trip out of Ventura today with Island Packers. I had one twisted pelagic fantasy when I loaded my gear on the boat this morning and by 4 pm we had fulfilled it...we had all five North American boobies on one trip!! I imagine we are the first trip to achieve this in the ABA area.
    
    We started at Anacapa Island where we found the continuing Masked Booby on the cliff faces. As we headed south from there we picked up on a distant booby south of Anacapa that we suspected was a Red-footed. Captain Joel floored it and we caught up the the bird, which was indeed a dark morph Red-footed Booby. From there we birded our way down to Santa Barbara Island where we found the continuing Brown Boobies there (80ish birds) with the bonus of a Blue-footed Booby amongst them. As we left the island number five had appeared to elude us, but as we swung around to the east side of the island we encountered a large feeding flock of Black-vented Shearwaters and other birds when soon after the cry of "black-and-white booby" rang out. We put the pedal to the metal one more time and ran down another booby. We eventually got close looks at the bird and noted the orangish bill...Nazca Booby! All five North American boobies on the same day...amazing! Perhaps a once in a lifetime birding event.
    
    Beyond the booby extravaganza, we had good fortune with a number of other birds including several large flock of Black-vented Shearwaters, which totaled in excess of 6,000 birds. These flocks had other shearwaters mixed in including Pink-footed, Buller's, and a Manx; numbers of attending jaegers (Pomarines and Parasitics); and others including Red-necked Phalarope, Common Murre, Cassin's Auklet, and Northern Fulmar. Deeper water south of the northern Islands had more shearwaters including one of the few Sooties we saw all day, Black and Ashy Storm-Petrels (and a Least seen by a few of us), Long-tailed Jaegers, Sabine's Gulls, Common Terns, and a number of Craveri's Murrelets. All in all a day that will be remembered by everyone there. Some birders got all five boobies as lifers, which is completely unfair to those of us that needed 49 years to see them all in the ABA Area. ;-)
    
    Thanks to Island Packers and Captain Joel Barrett for supporting our pelagic endeavors, and the leaders that helped today (Adam Searcy, Hugh Ranson, and Wes Fritz).
    
    We hope to get more trips on the schedule out of Ventura next year.
    
    Cheers
    
    Dave Pereksta
    Ventura
  2. -back to top-
  3. Searcher Pelagic Results LINK
    DATE: Sep 7, 2018 @ 10:35pm, 41 day(s) ago
    Birders,
    The annual Searcher pelagic trip departed San Diego about noon on Labor Day and was back to the dock Friday morning at 730 AM. Highlights were many. Monday afternoon was spent crossing the 9 mile bank and working our way up the 30 mile. Highlights were excellent looks at a couple of Brown Boobies as well as close passes by a RED-FOOTED BOOBY. Ashy, Black, and Leach's Storm-Petrels, plus a few leaders and participants were able to glimpse and photo one or two LEAST STORM_PETRELS along the way.
    We decided to start day 2 at Santa Barbara Island where we saw the continuing immature NAZCA BOOBY plus about 80 Brown Boobies. From Santa Barbara we worked our way northwest along the Santa Cruz basin, seeing good numbers of Pomarine and Long-tailed Jaegers, Arctic Terns, as well as the expected shearwater species. We were treated to another RED-FOOTED BOOBY not too far from SB Island. In the late afternoon we arrived at a bank south east of San Miguel Island called "The Condor Bank" as it was a fishing spot frequented by the original Condor board from Santa Barbara. Here we encountered large boils of 200lb Bluefin Tuna, and the bird show was spectacular. Several South Polar Skuas, a dozen jaegers, many hundreds of Pink-footed Shearwaters and likely a hundred Arctic Terns. The show was spectacular, and here we found yet another immature NAZCA BOOBY and a couple of Brown Boobies.
    After anchoring near San Miguel for the night, DAY 3 we headed out to The Rodriguez Dome about 30 miles to the west. We departed Miguel about 5 AM, and were on the dome about 730 AM. Just before arriving at Rodriguez we encountered yet another immature NAZCA BOOBY. Exceptional numbers of Buller's Shearwaters, 8 Guadalupe Murrelets (seen well by all onboard) as well as our first Red-billed Tropicbird of the trip were highlights of our day headed south. We had as many as 10 Black-footed Albatross with us at once, and there were several behind the boarWe finished the day at the San Juan Seamount. We encountered dozens of Blue Whales in this deep water as well as some Fin whales, and a couple of cooperative BAIRD"S-BEAKED Whales. Guadalupe Fur Seals were seen regularly. Our first TOWNSEND"S STORM-PETRELS
    DAY 4 was spent traveling traveling from the western edge of the Tanner and Cortez Banks to the San Clemente Island basin. We found a cooperative RED-BILLED TROPICBIRD on the water, as well our first of nearly a dozen COOK'S PETRELS. Leach's Storm-petrels were present in numbers, and we were able to get folks on a handful of TOWNSEND's Storm-Petrels. Inside the Cortez we had the familiar cry of "White Booby behind the boat", and had an immature booby circle the boat. This one seemed to show characters of MASKED BOOBY, but this bird was not as straightforward as the others, so we will be sending photos out to get some expert opinions before putting this one in the books.
    As we approached Sam Clemente we were treated to one of the most spectacular afternoons I have ever spent at sea. Boils of smaller bluefin tuna were everywhere, and there were literally thousands of Pink-footed Shearwaters wheeling about, as well as. hundreds of Arctic and Common Terns, dozens of Sabine's gulls and jaegers were in flight. We also saw about 35 Craveri's Murrelets in this area, some very close to the boat allowing great looks. We poked through flock after flock of birds until dark, eventually getting brief looks at a FLESH_FOOTED SHEARWATER. In the middle of this feeding frenzy we also saw yet another NAZCA BOOBY, this one a full adult.
    The high overcast conditions were also good for migrants, and we had Willow Flycatcher, Macgillvray'a Warbler as well as Orange-crowned, Townsend's, Black-throated Gray as well as multiple cowbirds and several species of shorebird.
    One of the best trips I have done off SoCal and certainly continues the excellent results this year. Thanks to Celia Condit and Captain Art Taylor from Searcher Natural History Tours, my co-leaders Dave Pereksta, Dave Povey, and Rob Hynson. Thanks to all the participants as well.
    Todd McGrath SKUA@... The Woodlands, TX
  4. -back to top-
  5. San Diego pelagic: LAYSAN, 2 new RED-FOOTED & new MASKED Boobies, 12 Craveri's, S.P. Skua, B-f Albatross LINK
    DATE: Aug 20, 2018 @ 5:42am, 60 day(s) ago
    The 12-hour pelagic trip from San Diego on Sunday, 19 August, out as far
    
    as the 30-Mile Bank aboard GRANDE and sponsored by Buena Vista Audubon
    
    Society was wildly successful for quality birds. Best for San Diego
    
    waters was the LAYSAN ALBATROSS that plopped down near the boat only
    
    10.5 nm WSW of Sunset Cliffs (Point Loma), on our way back in. Before
    
    that, the best birds had been yet another, new RED-FOOTED BOOBY 24.4 nm
    
    WSW of La Jolla, also sitting on the water near the boat, and a close
    
    fly-by sub-adult MASKED BOOBY at the "182" site on the 30-Mile Bank.
    
    (Both of these birds were recognizably DIFFERENT from the ones we saw in
    
    the same general waters just two days earlier!!) At the end of the day,
    
    we heard that yet another RED-FOOTED BOOBY was riding along on another
    
    fishing boat, so we met that boat at the mouth of the bay and enjoyed
    
    following that bird back to the dock! Combined with the 3 BROWN BOOBIES
    
    seen, we had a three-booby day. A BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSS made repeated
    
    passes close to the boat out at the 30-Mile, where there was also a
    
    distant SOUTH POLAR SKUA. And a total of 12 (6 pairs) of flighty
    
    CRAVERI'S MURRELETS were tallied, all well offshore. A BLACK TERN was
    
    seen by some, as was a WHITE-WINGED DOVE as we left the dock in the
    
    early morning. Photos of many of these birds will undoubtedly be posted
    
    by others. Offshore totals for the trip included:
    
    LAYSAN ALBATROSS: 1
    
    BLACK-FOOTED ALBATROSS: 1
    
    Pink-footed Shearwater: 90
    
    Sooty Shearwater: 2
    
    Black-vented Shearwater: 300
    
    Black Storm-Petrel: 350
    
    Ashy Storm-Petrel: 4
    
    Leach's Storm-Petrel: 15 (high)
    
    Least Storm-Petrel: 0 (a couple "maybe's" that were not seen well
    
    enough or photo'd)
    
    MASKED BOOBY: 1
    
    Brown Booby: 3
    
    RED-FOOTED BOOBY: 2
    
    Red-necked Phalarope: 50
    
    Red Phalarope: 200
    
    Pomarine Jaeger: 5
    
    Parasitic Jaeger: 2
    
    Long-tailed Jaeger: 1
    
    CRAVERI'S MURRELET: 12
    
    Cassin's Auklet: 6
    
    Sabine's Gull: 10
    
    BLACK TERN: 1
    
    WHITE-WINGED DOVE: 1
    
    Blue Whale: 1
    
    The next San Diego pelagic trips are scheduled for 23 September and 21
    
    October. See sandiegopelagics.com for more information.
    
    --Paul Lehman and leader contingent, San Diego
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  7. offshore San Diego: RED-FOOTED & MASKED Boobies, Least Stormies, Craveri's, Long-taileds LINK
    DATE: Aug 17, 2018 @ 3:40pm, 62 day(s) ago
    Several of us headed offshore on Friday the 17th from San Diego for 7+
    
    hours out to the 30-Mile Bank and return. Some good birds found, some
    
    late-summer specialties, and some dead zones. Totals offshore included:
    
    RED-FOOTED BOOBY: a dark-morph bird flew right by the boat 25.9 nm W of
    
    La Jolla. Photos. This bird looks very much like the bird(s) seen a
    
    week or so ago both at the end of the Mission Bay Jetty and offshore
    
    from a whalewatch boat (but which was much closer to shore than our bird).
    
    MASKED BOOBY: a near-adult was sitting on the water also near the
    
    30-Mile Bank, some 23.1 nm W of Point Loma. Photos. It seems as
    
    though, as of late, that Masked has become rarer than Nazca off CA....
    
    Least Storm-Petrel: total of 8, all at or near the 30-Mile Bank. None
    
    closer to shore.
    
    Craveri's Murrelet: total of 6 (plus 2 murrelet sp.), all pairs at or
    
    near the 30-Mile Bank
    
    Long-tailed Jaeger: 2 juveniles, one only 6.6 nm W of La Jolla, and the
    
    other out at the 30-Mile Bank where more typical
    
    Other species seen:
    
    Pink-footed Shearwater: 25
    
    Sooty Shearwater: 1
    
    Black-vented Shearwater: 50
    
    Ashy Storm-Petrel: total of ca. 30 birds is quite high for this late in
    
    the season off San Diego; peak numbers often in late May and June
    
    Black Storm-Petrel: total of 1800 included 1600 in several rafts on
    
    30-Mile Bank
    
    Cassin's Auklet: 3
    
    Pomarine Jaeger: 3
    
    Parasitic Jaeger: 1
    
    Red Phalarope: 100+
    
    Red-necked Phalarope: 40
    
    Sabine's Gull: 3 (incl. 1 juv.)
    
    Western Gull: 50
    
    Elegant Tern: 25
    
    The next scheduled pelagic trip off San Diego is this coming Sunday, but
    
    it is sold out. The next trip after that is in latter September and
    
    still has space. See sandiegopelagics.com for more information.
    
    --Paul Lehman and group, San Diego
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  9. Aug 29 pelagic trip out of Ventura with Island Packers LINK
    DATE: Aug 11, 2018 @ 4:08pm, 2 month(s) ago
    I am pleased to announce that Island Packers is offering a
    pelagic trip out of Ventura on Wednesday, August 29 at 7 am. Island Packers has
    graciously freed up a boat and we plan to run a 12-hour trip out to the edge that
    had all the Cook's Petrels and storm-petrels in July. Our July 15 trip had a Tristram's Storm-Petrel, Wedge-rumped Storm-Petrel, several Townsend's Storm-Petrels, 100+ Cook's Petrels, 2 Nazca Boobies, and a variety of other pelagic species including 1000s of shearwaters. There has been a
    persistent temperature break and favorable oceanic conditions in that
    area so it is likely there are still birds out there. There have been a lot of interesting birds offshore of southern California this summer including a number of Nazca Boobies, 2 Red-footed Boobies around San Diego this week, Craveri's Murrelets, Townsend's Storm-Petrels and more. One of our leaders was just on a fishing boat out
    of San Diego and said there are lots of Cook's Petrels and Leach's Storm-Petrels offshore, and he also had Black-footed and Laysan Albatrosses.
    The plan is to go
    directly to the spot where we had numbers of great birds in July (approximately 3 hours from Ventura) and spend our time working that edge for Cook's Petrels, storm-petrels, and whatever else might be out there. Last year we had numbers of Craveri's Murrelets
    in that same area and we have seen Townsend's Storm-Petrels there multiple times. Red-billed Tropicbird is also a possibility. To maximize our time in that productive area, we will not be stopping for common birds on the way out. We have a plan of attack and believe we have a chance of
    finding something good. Are we going to refind the Tristram's or
    Wedge-rumped I don't know, but we will be in the same area we found
    those birds and will spend hours there searching.
    
    If you are interested and able to make the trip, go to https://reserve.islandpackers.com/tab=special_trips
    and select the Wed Aug 29 pelagic bird trip, which is the last of the
    three special trips listed. It will be a 12-hour trip at a cost of $195 per adult. If you prefer to not use the web-based reservation
    system, you can call Island Packers during their business hours at (805)
    642-1393. We will need to fill this trip
    fast to make it a "go" so please sign-up quickly if you are interested. The trip will be on an ultra-fast catamaran that features a
    spacious and comfortable cabin, galley, and excellent viewing from both the
    upper and lower decks. A full contingent of outstanding seabird leaders will be
    present to make sure we see all that is out there. The Captain and crew know how to run birding
    trips and are enthusiastic and helpful.
    In addition, we work hard to creep up on birds and get them in the right
    light...photographers will not be disappointed!
    
    Hope to see you at sea
    
    Dave Pereksta
    Ventura
  10. -back to top-
  11. August 25 pelagic trip to Tanner and Cortez Banks LINK
    DATE: Aug 2, 2018 @ 2:16pm, 3 month(s) ago
    Birders,
    
    I have organized a pelagic trip to the Cortez and Tanner Banks at the end of this month. The basic details are: departure from Dana Point aboard the R/V Sea Explorer, leaving at 1 AM and returning at 9 PM on Saturday, August 25 (20 hours); there are NO bunks or full galley on board, but possibly enough room to sleep on the floor or benches inside (plenty of room outside). The per person cost is $200, and there are only TWO spaces remaining.
    
    This should be an excellent opportunity to see species like Black-footed Albatross, Leach's Storm-Petrel, Red-billed Tropicbird, Craveri's Murrelet, Arctic Tern, South Polar Skua, and Long-tailed Jaeger. It is also a good opportunity to look for rare species such as Cook's and Hawaiian Petrels, Townsend's Storm-Petrel, Least Storm-Petrel, and Guadalupe Murrelet. On July 15 a trip from Ventura to nearby waters recorded nearly 100 Cook's Petrels, Tristram's Storm-Petrel, Wedge-rumped Storm-Petrel, two Nazca Boobies, Long-tailed Jaeger, South Polar Skua, Sabine's Gull, and Black, Ashy, and Leach's Storm-Petrels. Additionally, t hree Townsend's Storm-Petrels were photographed on a trip out of San Diego on July 29. <
    /div>
    
    If you are interested in going or have any questions, please email me back (off list) and I will send you additional details and/or payment information.
    
    Tom Benson
    San Bernardino, CA
    thomasabenson AT aol.com
  12. -back to top-
  13. August 25 pelagic trip to Tanner and Cortez Banks LINK
    DATE: Jul 9, 2018 @ 10:45am, 3 month(s) ago
    Birders,
    
    I have organized a pelagic trip to the Cortez and Tanner Banks next month. The basic details are: departure from Dana Point aboard the R/V Sea Explorer, leaving at 1-2 AM and returning at 8-9 PM on Saturday, August 25 (18-20 hours); there are NO bunks or full galley on board, but possibly enough room to sleep on the floor or benches inside (plenty of room outside). The per person cost is $200, and there are currently about 10 spaces remaining.
    
    This should be an excellent opportunity to see species like Black-footed Albatross, Leach's Storm-Petrel, Red-billed Tropicbird, Craveri's Murrelet, Arctic Tern, South Polar Skua, and Long-tailed Jaeger. It is also a good opportunity to look for rare species such as Cook's and Hawaiian Petrels, Townsend's Storm-Petrel, Least Storm-Petrel, and Guadalupe Murrelet.
    
    If you are interested in going or have any questions, please email me back (off list) and I will send you additional details and/or payment information.
    
    Tom Benson
    San Bernardino, CA
    thomasabenson AT aol.com
  14. -back to top-
  15. Upcoming pelagic trip out of Ventura on July 15 LINK
    DATE: Jul 3, 2018 @ 10:55am, 4 month(s) ago
     Hi All
    
    This is a reminder that Island Packers is offering a 12-hour
    deepwater pelagic trip from the Ventura Harbor at 7 am on Sunday July 15. This trip will allow us to get to offshore
    waters beyond the reach of most day trips where we will have a chance to see a
    number of outstanding pelagic birds and marine mammals. Our intention is to go southwest from Ventura
    towards San Nicolas Island and the banks, knolls, canyons and other productive
    features in the area. This will give us
    a chance to look for sought after species like Cooks Petrel, Red-billed
    Tropicbird, Least Storm-Petrel, Leach's Storm-Petrel, Townsend's Storm-Petrel,
    Guadalupe Murrelet and Craveri's Murrelet.
    Our trip to this area last year was outstanding and yielded Cooks
    Petrels, Black-footed Albatross, 45 Craveris Murrelets (!!), Brown Booby, and
    a variety of other pelagic species. Recent pelagic trips out of San Diego have
    found Craveris Murrelets, Nazca Booby, Masked Booby, and Townsends
    Storm-Petrel so there are some great birds in the Southern California Bight at
    the moment. We will decide what our offshore destination will be after
    reviewing oceanographic conditions at the time of the trip, which will help
    determine where the birds and other marine life may be present or concentrated.
    
    Summer trips in July and August coincide with the earlier
    parts of the southbound fall migration of arctic nesting species, the northward
    dispersal of southern nesting species, and the nesting and fledging periods of
    breeding species on the Channel Islands.
    Past trips have found Cooks Petrel (rare), Manx Shearwater (rare),
    Black-footed Albatross, Laysan Albatross (rare), Buller's Shearwater, Leach's
    Storm-Petrel, Blue-footed Booby, Brown Booby, Long-tailed Jaeger, South Polar
    Skua, Scripps's Murrelet, Craveri's Murrelet, Arctic Tern, and a variety of
    other shearwaters, storm-petrels, pelagic gulls and terns, phalaropes, and
    alcids. Patrolling the shoreline of
    Anacapa Island has yielded American Oystercatchers over the last few
    years. Summer is also an excellent time
    for Ashy and Black Storm-Petrels, and Cassin's Auklets. There is often a flock of 1000's of Black
    Storm-Petrels south of the islands that we will attempt to find. A few Rhinoceros Auklets and Common Murres
    should still be around, along with Pigeon Guillemots near the islands. Red-billed Tropicbird is always possible on
    summer trips, although not found every year.
    
    The trip will be on an ultra-fast catamaran that features a
    spacious and comfortable cabin, galley, and excellent viewing from both the
    upper and lower decks. A full contingent of outstanding seabird leaders will be
    present to make sure we see all that is out there. The Captain and crew know how to run birding
    trips and are enthusiastic and helpful.
    In addition, we work hard to creep up on birds and get them in the right
    light...photographers will not be disappointed!
    
    Trips can be booked over the phone by calling (805) 642-1393
    or online at www.IslandPackers.com by clicking the Reserve Trip tab, select the
    Special Trips tab, and select your desired departure. The cost of the trip is
    $195 per adult.
    
    Hope to see you at sea!
    
    Dave Pereksta
    Ventura, CA
  16. -back to top-
  17. Potential Cortez Bank pelagic trip, August 25 LINK
    DATE: May 29, 2018, 5 month(s) ago
    California birders,
    
    I am trying to organize a pelagic trip to the Cortez Bank this year. The basic details are: departure from Dana Point aboard the R/V Sea Explorer (same boat used on Orange County Audubon pelagics), leaving at 1-2 AM and returning at 8-9 PM on Saturday, August 25 (18-20 hours); there are NO bunks or full galley on board, but possibly enough room to sleep on the floor or benches inside (plenty of room outside). The per person cost will likely be $200 (it will not be more than that).
    
    This should be an excellent opportunity to add species like Black-footed Albatross, Leach's Storm-Petrel, Red-billed Tropicbird, Craveri's Murrelet, Arctic Tern, South Polar Skua, and Long-tailed Jaeger to your LA County (and California) list. It is also a good opportunity to look for rare species such as Cook's and Hawaiian Petrels, Townsend's Storm-Petrel, Least Storm-Petrel, and Guadalupe Murrelet.
    
    If you are interested in going, please email me back (off list) and let me know so I can put your name on the manifest and determine if there is enough interest to fill the boat. I have a list of about 15 people who have expressed interest already, but we need at least 15 more to fill the boat and make this trip happen. If you have any questions regarding the details of the trip, please contact me and I will answer them to the best of my ability.
    
    Tom
    thomasabenson AT aol.com
  18. -back to top-
  19. Pelagic trip out of Ventura with Island Packers on 7 Oct 2017 LINK
    DATE: Sep 25, 2017 @ 1:30pm, 1 year(s) ago
    Hi All
    
    This
    is a reminder that Island Packers is offering an 11-hour deepwater
    pelagic trip from the Ventura Harbor at 7 am on Saturday October 7. This
    trip will allow us to get to offshore waters beyond the reach of most
    day trips where we will
    have a chance to see a number of outstanding pelagic birds and marine
    mammals. The waters around the northern
    Channel Islands can be very productive during the fall when hundreds
    (sometimes thousands) of shearwaters crowd into the inter-island gaps. We will be looking through flocks of Black-vented,
    Pink-footed, and Sooty Shearwaters for Buller's, Flesh-footed (uncommon),
    and Manx (rare) Shearwaters. This is peak season for seabird diversity
    so in addition to the species already mentioned, Black-footed Albatross,
    Black and Ashy Storm-Petrels, Cassin's and Rhinoceros Auklets, and
    Pomarine and Long-tailed Jaegers are all possible. It is a good time of
    year for South Polar Skua, Sabine's Gull, and Arctic Tern. Recent trips
    near the islands have found Blue-footed Booby (2013-2014, 2016) and Brown
    Booby (2013-2017). There is also a potential for sought-after species
    like Cooks' Petrel, Red-billed Tropicbird, Least Storm-Petrel, Townsend's Storm-Petrel, Guadalupe Murrelet, and
    Craveri's Murrelet. The last 4 years have been exceptional for Craveri's
    Murrelet off southern California and with warm water continuing, our chances to find this elusive species may be good. We saw approximately 45 Craveri's Murrelets on our recent July trip from Ventura! In addition, there was a Nazca Booby seen on a pelagic trip out of San Diego this weekend so anything is possible out there. We
    will decide what our offshore destinations will be after reviewing
    oceanographic conditions at the time of the trip, which will help
    determine where birds and other marine life may be present.
    
    The trip will be on an ultra-fast catamaran that features a
    spacious and comfortable cabin, galley, and excellent viewing from
    both the upper and lower decks. A full contingent of outstanding seabird
    leaders will be present to make sure we see all that is out there. The
    Captain and crew know how to run birding trips and are enthusiastic
    and helpful.In addition, we work hard to creep up on birds and get
    them in the right light for photographers.
    
    Trips can be booked over the phone by calling (805) 642-1393 or online at www.IslandPackers.comby
    clicking the Reserve Trip tab, select the Special Trips tab, and select
    your desired departure. The cost of the trip is $170 per adult.
    
    Hope to see you at sea!
    
    Dave Pereksta
    Ventura, CA
  20. -back to top-
  21. Ventura pelagic trip report - 16 July 2017, Cook's Petrels, Craveri's Murrelets, and more! LINK
    DATE: Jul 20, 2017 @ 5:21pm, 1 year(s) ago
    Hi all
    
    On Sunday July 16, Island Packers hosted a 12-hour pelagic trip from the Ventura Harbor. With a favorable forecast, our goal was to go southwest to waters west and south of San Nicolas Island. Upon leaving the Ventura Harbor, our first destination was Anacapa Island where we would look for boobies, shearwaters, and some of the local nesting species we were not likely to see farther offshore. En route we encountered several flocks of shearwaters feeding around dolphin schools that included numbers of Black-vented (which were earlier in the season than expected), Sooty, and a few Pink-footed Shearwaters. We also saw two Common Murres in this area, which was nearly all we saw of that species for the day. As we worked the flocks of shearwaters looking for something uncommon or rare, shouts of BOOBY! rang out. The feeding activity in the area attracted two Brown Boobies. One took off quickly, but the other stayed for extended looks and great photo ops as it flew right past the boat several times. After the booby left, we worked the shore of Anacapa Island where we saw numbers of Pigeon Guillemots and other breeders including a few Black Oystercatchers.
    
    From Anacapa Island we headed west to several underwater features and the Anacapa Passage where there were large flocks of the common shearwaters and a variety of other species including Northern Fulmar, Cassin's Auklet, and Rhinoceros Auklet; all of which allowed close views. After thoroughly checking this area, we headed south and west to the waters west of San Nicolas Island. We had a steady trickle of birds (shearwaters, Cassin's Auklets, Red-necked Phalaropes, etc.) along our route highlighted by several South Polar Skuas, Ashy and Black Storm-Petrels, Scripps's Murrelets, and the first of our 45 +/-Craveri's Murrelets seen on the day. Yes...45 Craveri's Murrelets!! Not a typo. The thrill of the day followed soon after as we were looking at a blue whale; a gray bird with an "M" pattern across its back and clean white undersides zipped through our view, which led to simultaneous cries of COOK'S PETREL!! This was the first we have seen off southern California since 2010. Traversing that area led to us finding several more Cook's and a variety of other life, including a fin whale.
    
    Crossing the deep waters south of San Nicolas yielded more Cook's Petrels, several dozen Craveri's Murrelets, a Black-footed Albatross, and three loggerhead turtles. The turtles were a rare treat as we almost never see them on our pelagic trips. I shared our sightings with NOAA today and they informed me that loggerheads have increased in the Southern California Bight over the last few years (perhaps due to warmer water), so maybe we will start to see more of them. From San Nicolas we plotted our course north back to Ventura where wecontinued to see a variety of birds throughout the rest of the day including another Brown Booby, Red Phalarope, Black and Ashy Storm-Petrels, and the usual pelagic species. In addition to the great diversity of birds, we saw three species of whales, mako shark, blue shark, mola mola, two swordfish, a very cooperative northern fur seal, and a variety of dolphins and pinnipeds. We encountered so much wildlife on this trip that it felt like someone had left the zoo door open. Remarkable day at sea!
    
    I would like to thank the people that made this trip such a success including the captain and crew from Island Packers. Captain Jimmy McWaters did an incredible job getting us views of all the wildlife, which occasionally included speeding after skuas and petrels. He was as enthusiastic as we were and really worked with us to get to the areas we wanted to explore. Joel Barrett balanced his duties on the boat with spotting birds all day. His enthusiasm for doing these trips should ensure that we will continue to have pelagic trips running to the areas around and beyond the northern Channel Islands. He and I are talking about a number of options for exploring some areas that birders are drooling to get to on a day trip...stay tuned! I also want to thank the leaders we had on board including Bernardo Alps, Wes Fritz, Peter Gaede, Dan Maxwell, Todd McGrath, Hugh Ranson, and Adam Searcy. These guys work tirelessly all day spotting birds and helping participants get on the species they are looking for...all while having fun and sharing their great depth of knowledge on seabirds and other creatures of the deep.
    
    We have a 10-hour trip scheduled for Oct 7 so check out Island Packers website if you are interested in joining us. Trips can be booked over the phone by calling (805) 642-1393 or online at www.IslandPackers.comby clicking the Reserve Trip tab, select the Special Trips tab, and select your desired departure. The cost of the Oct trip is $170 per person.
    
    Also check out our "Southern California Pelagic Bird Trips" Facebook page.Later this evening, I will post this trip report with a number of photos from Sunday.
    
    Cheers
    
    Dave Pereksta
    Ventura, CA
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  23. Pelagic trip out of Ventura with Island Packers on July 16 LINK
    DATE: Jun 30, 2017, 1 year(s) ago
    Hi All
    
    This is a reminder that Island Packers is offering a 12-hour deepwater pelagic trip from the Ventura Harbor at 7 am on Sunday July 16. This trip will allow us to get to offshore waters beyond the reach of most day trips where we will
    have a chance to see a number of outstanding pelagic birds and marine
    mammals. Our intention is to go south from Ventura towards San Nicolas
    Island and the banks, knolls, canyons and other productive features in
    the area. This will give us a chance to look for sought after species
    like Red-billed Tropicbird, Least Storm-Petrel, Leach's Storm-Petrel,
    Townsend's Storm-Petrel, Guadalupe Murrelet and Craveri's Murrelet. Research trips that have traversed the area south of the Channel Islands
    this spring have recorded a few rare species including a Nazca Booby
    and Cook's Petrels. We
    will decide what our offshore destination will be after reviewing
    oceanographic conditions at the time of the trip, which will help
    determine where the birds and other marine life may be present or
    concentrated.
    
    Summer
    trips in July and August
    coincide with the earlier parts of the southbound fall migration of
    arctic nesting species, the northward dispersal of southern nesting
    species, and the nesting and fledging periods of breeding species on the
    Channel Islands. Past trips have found Manx Shearwater (rare),
    Black-footed Albatross, Laysan Albatross (rare), Buller's Shearwater,
    Leach's Storm-Petrel,
    Blue-footed Booby, Brown Booby, Long-tailed
    Jaeger, South Polar Skua, Scripps's Murrelet, Craveri's Murrelet (several were seen out of San Diego last week so they are around), Arctic Tern, and a variety of other shearwaters,
    storm-petrels, pelagic gulls and terns, phalaropes, and alcids.
    Patrolling the shoreline of Anacapa Island has yielded American
    Oystercatchers over the last few years. Summer is also an excellent
    time for Ashy and Black Storm-Petrels, and Cassin's Auklets. There is
    often a flock of 1000's of Black Storm-Petrels south of the islands
    that we will attempt to find. A few Rhinoceros Auklets and Common Murres should still be
    around, along with Pigeon Guillemots near the islands. Red-billed
    Tropicbird is always possible on summer trips, although not found every
    year.
    
    The trip will be on an ultra-fast catamaran that features a
    spacious and comfortable cabin, galley, and excellent viewing from
    both the upper and lower decks. A full contingent of outstanding seabird
    leaders will be present to make sure we see all that is out there. The
    Captain and crew know how to run birding trips and are enthusiastic
    and helpful.In addition, we work hard to creep up on birds and get
    them in the right light...photographers will not be disappointed!
    
    Trips can be booked over the phone by calling (805) 642-1393 or online at www.IslandPackers.comby clicking the Reserve Trip tab, select the Special Trips tab, and select your desired departure. The cost of the trip is $195 per adult.
    
    Hope to see you at sea!
    
    Dave Pereksta
    Ventura, CA
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  25. San Diego Pelagic June 11 LINK
    DATE: Jun 1, 2017 @ 5:02pm, 1 year(s) ago
    The next San Diego Pelagics/Buena Vista Audubon offshore
    adventure is Sunday June 11, 2017. Just two weeks away.This is a 12-hour
    trip departing at 6 a.m. from Point Loma Sportfishing Landing in San Diego Bay.
    Cost is $105.We will be heading out to the Nine and 30 Mile Banks, where
    expected species include Pink-footed and Sooty Shearwaters; Black, Ashy and
    Leach's Storm-Petrels; Brown Booby; Elegant, Common, and Least Terns; and Cassin's
    Auklets.Possible species include Black-footed Albatross, N. Fulmar,
    Black-vented Shearwater, Red-billed Tropicbird,Red and Red-necked
    Phalaropes, South Polar Skua, Pomarine Jaeger, and Scripps's Murrelet.The
    last two years we have had early Craveri's Murrelets on this trip. The recent
    May 21st. trip had the secondcounty record for Cook's Petrel (the other
    record is from June 13, 1997). Could this be the "right" time of year
    for that speciesLast year's June trip also got good looks at a
    Red-billed Tropicbird. I've always liked the mid May to mid June time periodfor
    South Polar Skua. Who knows what might show up!For details and past trip
    reports go to www.sandiegopelagics.com.
    
    I hope you will join us. Call (619) 223-1627 to make your
    reservation.
    
    Dave Povey Dulzura
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  27. Oct 8 pelagic trip out of Ventura - space available LINK
    DATE: Oct 3, 2016 @ 8:13am, 2 year(s) ago
    There is still space available for a pelagic trip out of the Ventura Harbor on Oct 8 with Island Packers. The advance forecast looks great for Saturday so we hope you can join us offshore. The waters around the northern
    Channel Islands can be very productive during the fall when hundreds
    (sometimes thousands) of shearwaters crowd into the inter-island gaps. We will be looking through flocks of Black-vented,
    Pink-footed, and Sooty Shearwaters for Buller's, Flesh-footed (uncommon),
    and Manx (rare) Shearwaters. This is peak season for seabird diversity
    so in addition to the species already mentioned, Black-footed Albatross,
    Black and Ashy Storm-Petrels, Cassin's and Rhinoceros Auklets, and
    Pomarine and Long-tailed Jaegers are all possible. It is a good time of
    year for South Polar Skua, Sabine's Gull, and Arctic Tern. Recent trips
    near the islands have found Blue-footed Booby (2013-2014, 2016) and Brown
    Booby (2013-2016)! There is also a potential for sought-after species
    like Red-billed Tropicbird, Least Storm-Petrel, Guadalupe Murrelet, and
    Craveri's Murrelet. The last 3 years have been exceptional for Craveri's
    Murrelet off southern California and with warm water continuing, our chances to find this elusive species may be good. We
    will decide what our offshore destinations will be after reviewing
    oceanographic conditions at the time of the trip, which will help
    determine where birds and other marine life may be present.
    
    Fall Migration Adventure
    October 8th (Sat)
    10 hrs 8 am-6 pm
    $170 per adult
    Previous
    year highlights include: Blue-footed and Brown Booby; Black, Ashy, and Least Storm-Petrels; American
    Oystercatcher; Craveriís Murrelet; South Polar Skua; Pomarine, Parasitic, and Long-tailed
    Jaegers; Cassinís and Rhinoceros Auklets; Red and Red-necked Phalarope;
    Northern Fulmar; Pink-footed, Sooty, and Black-vented Shearwaters, Sabine's Gulls, Common/Arctic Terns and Common
    Murre. Other possibilities include Bullerís and Flesh-footed
    Shearwaters, Wilsonís Storm Petrel, and Red-billed Tropicbird.
    
    The trip will be on an ultra-fast catamaran that featured a spacious and comfortable cabin, galley, and excellent viewing from
    both the upper and lower decks. A full contingent of outstanding seabird
    leaders will be present to make sure we see all that is out there. The
    Captains and crews know how to run birding trips and are enthusiastic
    and helpful.In addition, we work hard to creep up on birds and get
    them in the right light...photographers will not be disappointed!
    
    Trips can be booked over the phone by calling (805) 642-1393 or online at www.IslandPackers.comby clicking the Reserve Trip tab, Select the Special Trips tab, and select your desired departure.
    
    Hope to see you at sea!
    
    Dave Pereksta
    Ventura, CA
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  29. Recent San Diego Pelagic Trip LINK
    DATE: Aug 28, 2016, 2 year(s) ago
    The San Diego pelagic on Aug. 21, 2016 started off with the unusual target of an albino cormorant that had been reported on the bait docks the previous week. We found and photographed the bird on the barrier around the submarine base, and what an unusual sight it was Ė a pure white Brandtís Cormorant. We were also successful with our more traditional targets, getting good looks at CRAVERI'S MURRELETS, which was a life bird for several birders on board.We counted 10 on the day, which was quite good for the windy conditions. Other species of note included LEACH'S STORM-PETRELS, with perhaps twenty five for the trip. The majority were dark-rumped or intermediate white-rumped chapmani subspecies, but a couple of bright white-rumped birds had us looking at photos for possible Townsend's or Wilson's Storm-Petrels. These were likely the nominate Leach's Storm-Petrels. Although we had no Brown Boobies on the channel buoys, we did manage to get several farther offshore, which was another target bird for several of our participants. A bit of good news on the seabird reproduction front, Black-vented Shearwaters appear to have done well this year as we saw good numbers on bright fresh plumaged birds I take to be birds of the year.All clearly thriving on this yearís mass of Northern Anchovy locally.Sea surface temps were 69-73 mostly 70 degrees.
    Partial species list offshore:
    Pink-footed Shearwater67 Sooty Shearwater
    
    7 Black-vented Shearwater
    
    750 Leach's Storm-Petrel (chapmani) 25 Leach's Storm-Petrel (leucorhoa)
    
    2 Ashy Storm-Petrel
    
    3 Black Storm-Petrel
    
    110 Brown Booby
    
    4 Red-necked Phalarope
    
     40 CRAVERI'S MURRELET
    
     10 Cassin's Auklet
    
    1 Common Tern
    
    12 Elegant Tern
    
    108
    
    Dave Povey Dulzura
    
    The next BVAS / Grande trip is Sept 25th and only has 9 spots left; call 619 223-1627 to reserve your spot.
  30. -back to top-


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