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San Diego pelagic: 56 Cook’s Petrels (!), Craveri’s, Arctic Terns, Leach’s, Fulmar

5:20 am

The Saturday, June 3rd, pelagic trip aboard “Legacy” and sponsored by Buena Vista Audubon Society traveled out to the outer edge of San Diego County waters at the 30-Mile Bank and “The Corner,” via the 9-Mile Bank and San Diego Trough. It was certainly a record day for Cook’s Petrels, many seen very well both in flight and sitting on the water, with the day’s total of 56 birds setting a new record for San Diego County waters. It also included two birds record close to shore, with one on the 9-Mile Bank some 11.5 miles off Point Loma and another just inside the 9-Mile Bank only 10 miles from Point Loma. Other highlights included 7 Arctic Terns (very rare in spring), 7 Leach’s Storm-Petrels (good count for this early in the season), 3 Craveri’s Murrelets, a rare-in-June Northern Fulmar, and 14 Ashy Storm-Petrels. Still good numbers of Scripps’s Murrelets present, two Brown Boobies, and single getting-late adult Sabine’s Gull and adult Pomarine Jaeger. Also a number of Blue Whales and one Fin Whale.

Totals for the day once a couple miles offshore were:

Pomarine Jaeger:  1  (northbound, Nine-Mile Bank)

Scripps’s Murrelet:  43

Craveri’s Murrelet:  3  (San Diego Trough)

murrelet sp.:  7

Cassin’s Auklet:  32

Sabine’s Gull:  1  (30-Mile Bank)

Western Gull:  40

Least Tern:  23

Arctic Tern:  7  (30-Mile Bank)

Elegant Tern:  110

Leach’s Storm-Petrel:  7  (30-Mile Bank)

Ashy Storm-Petrel:  14

Black Storm-Petrel:  170

Northern Fulmar:  1  (30-Mile Bank)

Cook’s Petrel:  56  (54 between SD Trough and 30-Mile Bank/The Corner, 2 on and just inside 9-Mile Bank)

Pink-footed Shearwater:  23

Sooty Shearwater:  280

Black-vented Shearwater:  28

Brown Booby:  2

Brown Pelican:  15

Brandt’s Cormorant: 5

The next scheduled pelagic trip is 15 July. Same length, same approximate route. Also multiple trips in August and September.

–Paul Lehman, Dave Povey, Bruce Rideout, Nancy Christensen, Dan King, Jimmy McMorran, San Diego