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San Diego Pelagic 16 August: Long-tailed, Least, Arctic, Craveri's

The Buena Vista Audubon sponsored pelagic trip out of Mission Bay aboard "Legacy" on 16 August had light 2-foot swell, but with an eddy-caused increase in winds to 10-15 knots resulted in a 1-2 foot chop. Mostly fine, but made it more difficult to spot alcids on the water, but it also helped the Pink-foots and Sooties gain a bit more altitude! And we did escape the heat. Birded out to the 9-Mile and 30-Mile Banks, including about an hour inside L. A. County waters. Overall numbers were spotty, with some sections with few birds, but a few others that had lots of activity, particularly around the top end of the 9-Mile Bank. Saw several species of late summer/early fall specialties. The OFFSHORE list was as follows:

Marbled Godwit: 2

Red Phalarope: 8

Red-necked Phalarope: 140

Pomarine Jaeger: 3

LONG-TAILED JAEGER: 1 (near-adult, 9-Mile Bank)

Sabine's Gull: 4

Heermann's Gull: 6

Western Gull: 110

ARCTIC TERN: 2 (adults, near south end 30-Mile Bank)

Common Tern: 6

Elegant Tern: 225

Royal Tern: 2

CRAVERI'S MURRELET: 4 (at vic. 30-Mile and 9-Mile Banks)

murrelet sp.: 4 (probably Craveri's, vic. SD Trough)

LEACH'S STORM-PETREL: 19 (15 dark-rumped, "Chapman's"-types; 5 white- or whitish-rumped)


Black Storm-Petrel: 225

LEAST STORM-PETREL: 1 (south end 30-Mile Bank)

Pink-footed Shearwater: 225

Sooty Shearwater: 25

Black-vented Shearwater: 650


Brandt's Cormorant: 1

PELAGIC CORMORANT: 1 (despite it's name-sake, very unusual well offshore, and this bird–an immature–at south end 30-Mile Bank)

Brown Pelican: 45

The next scheduled pelagic trips are in approx. the third week of Sep and second week of Oct, also aboard Legacy. See for further information.

–Paul Lehman, Dave Povey, Bruce Rideout, et al., San Diego
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports