Saturday, August 17, 2013


Howdy, Birders,
If you are anywhere in the neighborhood of Pillar Point, Half Moon Bay, California you might want to stop to see the seabird spectacle that happens most evenings and sometimes, early mornings, as well. There is a good anchovy run, right up to the beach, happening, right now! Up to 10,000 SOOTY SHEARWATERS, 200 BROWN PELICANS, 300 HEERMANN'S GULLS and as many as 800 ELEGANT TERNS are feeding on the schooling anchovies. 
 A small portion of the massive numbers of ELEGANT TERNS, resting on the jetty at Pillar Point.
A very small portion of the nearly 10,000 SOOTY SHEARWATERS, in swarming flocks, feeding on anchovies. 
After an extremely disheartening show of Sooty Shearwaters last year, this is good to see. Sooty Shearwaters were seen in a few large flocks from shore last year, and even inside of the Pillar Point Harbor, but they were not feeding. Rather, they were looking for food — and, not finding it. The Central California anchovy population crashed in 2008. It seems that they are now making a comeback! Don't take the Sooty Shearwater for granted. The population is still in decline. Don't miss this scene if you are in California, just south of San Francisco.
Shearwater Journeys has a number of upcoming trips departing from Pillar Point, Half Moon Bay. This morning, we had wonderful views of this ocean event. During out nearly 11 hour pelagic trip today, we saw 10 species of tubenoses! A full report will come later. Heading out, again, tomorrow.
Shearwaters Forever,
Debi Shearwater

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