HMCS Vancouver

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 0-10 knots E/NE
  • Sky: clear
  • Water: rippled

Ecological

  • The weaner returned. I’m not sure how much longer the term “weaner” applies?
  • Initially I thought the weaner was a male, but now I think it is actually a female.
  • There were three adult bald eagles in the reserve today. I just missed getting a photo of all three flying together.
  • I made a little “trip” to the north-west edge of Great Race.

Maintenance

  • Hand pumped some diesel.

Boats

  • Kyle came out in Haiku with some food for me!
  • A large Canadian Navy ship, the HMCS Vancouver, tied up on the navy buoy at the mouth of Pedder Bay.

Visit from Cheanuh First Nations

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 10-15 knots SW, later 5-10 West
  • Sky: clear
  • Water: 1′ chop

Ecological

  • A new female elephant seal appeared this afternoon.
  • The weaner moved about 3 feet all day, snoozing on top of the cistern.
  • Watched some geese engage in battle.
  • Some nice flowers.

Maintenance

  • Month end report data collection.
  • Stacked some firewood.
  • Did some goose work.

Boats

  • Kyle came out in Second Nature with some visitors from the local First Nations Reserve.
  • While presumably checking out the harbour seals, they came across a boat with some of their friends in it.

Visitors

  • The chief from Cheanuh, his wife, and their two children came out with Kyle and Guy.

Windy Day for a Census

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: a steady 20-25 knots West
  • Sky: mostly sunny
  • Water: 1′ chop

Ecological

  • Census day!
  • The weaner was lounging by the house all day.
  • Discovered my first Canada Goose nests with eggs in them.
  1. Harbour Seals: 143
  2. California Sea Lions: 66
  3. Steller (Northern) Sea Lions: 42
  4. Elephant Seals: 1 weaner
  5. Seagulls unspecified: 221
  6. Surfbirds: 62
  7. Cormorants unspecified: 27
  8. Double Crested Cormorant: 4
  9. Black Turnstones: 29
  10. Canada Geese: 21
  11. Rock Sandpipers: 11
  12. Harlequin Ducks: 7 (5 males and 2 females)
  13. Bald Eagles: 7 (2 adults, 5 immature)
  14. Black Oystercatchers: 2
  15. Killdeer: 1

Maintenance

  • Ran the desalinator.

Boats

  • At least one eco-tour came by today.

The Weaner Returns

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 10-15 knots North, later NW
  • Sky: mostly clear
  • Water: 1′ chop

Ecological

  • The weaner was back on Great Race today, over by the base of the tower.
  • The other male is still here too.
  • I saw some rock sandpipers today. Perhaps I failed to pick them out from the surfbirds yesterday.

Maintenance

  • Hand pumped more diesel into the day tank.

Boats

  • A few eco-tours.

Other

  • Lots of DND blasting today.
  • Big blasts at the following times:
  • 9:48, 9:50, 10:06, 10:22, 12:00, and 12:02.
  • Bigger bangs at the following times:
  • 14:09 and 14:12.

 

A No Weaner Census

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 5-10 knots North
  • Sky: overcast
  • Water: rippled

Ecological

  • Census day!
  • The weaner was gone this morning. Hopefully he is ok.
  • Normally I only ever see killdeer at night, but today I saw a pair off and on all day!
  1. California Sea Lions: 85
  2. Harbour Seals: 44
  3. Steller (Northern) Sea Lions: 39
  4. Elephant Seals: 1 male
  5. Seagulls unspecified: 269 (same total two weeks in a row!)
  6. Pigeon Guillemots: 241
  7. Cormorants unspecified: 57
  8. Surfbirds: 49
  9. Harlequin Ducks: 32 (16 males and 16 females)
  10. Black Turnstones: 22
  11. Canada Geese: 13
  12. Black Oystercatchers: 9
  13. Bald Eagles: 6 (2 adults, 4 immature)
  14. Killdeer: 2

Boats

  • Kyle stopped by for 1 minute to exchange the extra security camera for a new Wifi access point.
  • There were several fishing boats literally yards outside the Rockfish Conservation Area.
  • A few eco-tours came by.

Maintenance

  • Installed the new Wifi access point in the Students’ House.

Other

  • Lots of DND blasting today.
  • Small blasts at the following times:
  • 10:25, 10:27, 10:45, and 12:34.
  • Larger blasts at the following times:
  • 12:32, 12:53, 14:52, 14:54, and 15:11.

Film Crew Island Visit

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 5-10 knots West in the morning
  • Around 15:30 the wind picked up to 25+ knots West. 18:00 peak at 42 knots.
  • Sky: overcast, then some blue sky, then some rain
  • Water: no visible wave crests, but lots of surge

Ecological

  • One of the larger male e-seals returned in the morning.
  • The weaner is still around.
  • Lots of bald eagles in the reserve.

Maintenance

  • Kyle and I took a look at the diesel hand pump and the desalinator.

Boats

  • Kyle came out in Second Nature with the 2 person film crew to take some footage.
  • Several eco-tours came by later on.
  • A few boats out fishing halibut just beyond the reserve.

Visitors

  • Kyle and the film crew were on the island for about 2 hours.

Other

  • Lots of DND blasting today.
  • There were blasts at the following times:
  • 10:00~, 12:50, 12:52, 13:12, 13:20, 13:23.

 

Film Crew Boat Tour

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 20-25 knots N/NE in the morning, down to zero in the evening
  • Sky: overcast
  • Water: 1′ chop

Ecological

  • The weaner did more wandering around today.
  • I observed/listened to a pair of bald eagles talking to each other.

Maintenance

  • Checked and topped up over 1/4 of the battery bank.

Boats

  • Kyle brought out a small film crew in Second Nature to film the Steller sea lions.
  • However it was too choppy at the jetty to land, so they simply did a boat tour instead.
  • A couple of eco-tours came by later on.

A Vibe Like No Other

Weather

  • Visibility: 15+ miles, Mt. Baker clearly visible
  • Wind: 20-25 knots NE in the morning and evening, down to near zero in the middle
  • Sky: mix of sun and clouds
  • Water: 1′ chop

Ecological

  • The weaner went on a few adventures around the house. He even wiggled his way into the doorway, temporarily blocking me from entering the house.
  • Quite a few Canada Geese on the island.
  • Also some eagle action.
  • I saw one eagle flying around with a fish, but I couldn’t get a good photo.

Maintenance

  • Started checking the water levels in the battery room.
  • Tried to manually pump diesel into the day tank without much success.

Boats

  • Several eco-tours came by today.
  • A tug pulling a barge that had a couple of boats on it passed to the north of the reserve.
  • A bit redundant, transporting a boat over water, isn’t it?

Other

  • It was my birthday today.
  • Funny how it seems just like any other day when you are alone with no one to remind you.
  • A unique birthday vibe.

Whale Sighting!

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 10-15 knots West, later 5 knots South, then 5-10 West
  • Sky: clear and sunny!
  • Water: rippled

Ecological

  • Census day!
  • Shortly before 15:30 as I was counting shorebirds, I heard a loud noise to my right. Glancing over, I was thrilled to see a whale surfacing in the South Channel. I managed to get some photos as it resurfaced farther south-west.
  1. California Sea Lions: 79
  2. Harbour Seals: 69
  3. Steller (Northern) Sea Lions: 33
  4. Elephant Seals: 3, all on Great Race, 2 young males, 1 weaner
  5. Whale: 1 (I think it was an Orca)
  6. Seagulls unspecified: 269
  7. Pigeon Guillemots: 45
  8. Cormorants unspecified: 30
  9. Double Crested Cormorants: 9
  10. Surfbirds: 37
  11. Harlequin Ducks: 27 (15 males and 12 females)
  12. Canada Geese: 24
  13. Black Turnstones: 20
  14. Bald Eagles: 20 (4 adults, 16 immature)
  15. Black Oystercatchers: 6
  16. Rock Sandpipers: 4
  17. Crows: 3

Boats

  • A few eco-tours passed by today.
  • Second Nature came out with food supplies for me.
  • A large navy sailboat passed by north of the reserve.

Visitors

  • Kyle and Jeff came out in Second Nature.

Other

  • One helicopter flew just south of the reserve in the morning.

Ecoguardian Changeover

Weather

  • Guy et Christine’s 8am weather report.
  • Visibility: 13 miles
  • Wind: 5-10 knots West
  • Sky: overcast
  • Water: 1′ chop

03-13 Waves

Ecological

  • The elephant seal weaner was back on the grass between the buildings.
  • One juvenile male spent the day sleeping by the tower.
  • A second young male appeared in the afternoon and pestered the weaner.
  • I was pleased to spy several oystercatchers, a pair of harlequin ducks, two bald eagles, and a raven, amongst the usual seagulls, cormorants, and black turnstones.

03-13 Weaner and male

Maintenance

  • Guy, Christine, and Kyle gave me a tour of the facilities.
  • Various little changes here and there, but overall no massive differences.
  • Unpacked and settled in to the house.

Boats

  • Kyle and Second Nature brought me out around 12:30.
  • They departed at 1:20 with Guy et Christine.
  • 3 eco-tours came by in the afternoon.

03-13 Eco-tour 1 03-13 Eco-tour 2

Visitors

  • Kyle

Other

  • I am excited to be starting my fourth lengthy shift out at Race Rocks.
  • This is Riley Strother signing off and wishing you a goodnight!