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Second-hand report of Sooty Terns off Pt. Loma, Feb. 10, 2024

9:21 am

I hesitate to mention second-hand reports of birds, but when I was on the Hornblower on Monday, two of the Natural History Museum’s docents came up to me to describe two unusual birds they had seen just near the tip of Pt. Loma on the Saturday, Feb. 10 trip, the day after the end of the strong atmospheric river from the southwest that lasted for 4 days. I queried them separately and their descriptions matched one another’s.

They said the birds looked like terns, but were black on the top side and had forked tails that were extensively black in the center but had longer white outer tail feathers.

Maybe they are halfway back to the Galapagos by now, or maybe they could show up somewhere in the county.

Stan Walens, San Diego
Feb 14, 2024; 9:20 am