Tuesday, August 6, 2013

BBC Pelagic Trip August 3rd ,2013


 Justed returned from a very successful BBC Pelagic Trip to the warm waters of the Gulf Stream, 80 miles east of Nantucket.For the most part the weather was good, but the seas were a little on the rough side, causing more than a few cases of seasickness and a few bruises.  This year we departed Hyannis at 2:30AM on the Helen H and made it back to the dock around 9:00PM! Although there were no super rarities, we had 5 species of Shearwaters and 3 species of Storm-Petrels- which provided everyone with decent looks, along with large numbers of Dolphins and a couple Whales.

Many thanks to Nick Bonomo, James Smith and Mark Faherty for leading the trip and certainly special thanks go out to Ida Giriunas for organizing not just this trip, but all the BBC Pelagic Trips.
Below are photos and I've included the trip totals provided by Nick Bonomo.


Great Shearwater

Great Shearwater

Great Shearwater-riding the wave

Great Shearwaters

White-sided Dolphin

White-sided Dolphin with Wilson's Storm-Petrel.

Wilson's Storm-Petrels

Wilson's Storm-Petrel

Wilson's Storm-Petrel

Leach's Storm-Petrel

Leach's Storm-Petrel

Fin Whale

Sooty Shearwater

Cory's Shearwater

Cory's Shearwater

Audubon's Shearwater

Audubon's Shearwater- note heavy wing molt.

Audubon's Shearwater

Audubon's Shearwater


Sun starting to set.......

3 Common Loon
17 Cory's Shearwater (4 birds seen well were identified as the more common ‘borealis’ subspecies)
609 Great Shearwater (almost exclusively on Nantucket Shoals)
7 Sooty Shearwater (Nantucket Shoals)
1 Manx Shearwater (Nantucket Shoals)
6 Audubon's Shearwater (all seen in approx.  72 degree water right along shelf edge, but none in the warmest/deepest waters; both fresh and heavily molting individuals seen)
769 Wilson's Storm-Petrel
43 Leach's Storm-Petrel (most along shelf edge and deeper)
8 BAND-RUMPED STORM-PETREL (exclusively in deep 73-74.5 degree water south of the shelf edge; one bird photo’d well enough to observe rather stout structure and nearly complete primary molt, which falls in line with potential winter-breeding “Grant’s” form hypothesized to be the expected visitor to our region)
5 Leach's/Band-rumped Storm-Petrel
3 Northern Gannet
6 Red-necked Phalarope (Nantucket Shoals)
5 Red Phalarope(Nantucket Shoals)
4 phalarope sp. (Nantucket Shoals)
11 Common Tern
2 SKUA sp. (Nantucket Shoals; one photographed highly suggestive of South Polar Skua, review in progress)


1 Fin Whale

2 Minke Whale

16 Risso’s Dolphin

2 Offshore Bottlenose Dolphin

50 Common Dolphin