Green-winged Teal

Weather

  • Visibility: 10-15 Miles
  • Wind: 15-25 NE
  • Sky: Cloudy
  • Water: Choppy about 1 metre

Boats/Visitors

  • a couple ecotours went by today

Ecological

  • The 4 day old pup is doing well
  • The largest male was on the other side of the lighthouse today but came “running” when he heard the mother yelling at one of the juveniles getting too close, the big guy came and chased him off so Springtide ecotours got a bit of show today
  • Also some Green-winged Teals today along with harlequins, oystercatchers and eagles

The Battles Begin

Weather

  • Visibility: 10-15 miles throughout the day
  • Wind: light breezes throughout the day, 4-11 knots
  • Sky: overcast this morning then cleared up a bit by late afternoon
  • Water: mostly calm, a bit choppy at times

Boats/Visitors

  • The usual commercial freighter and barge traffic
  • Garry and a friend came out for the annual christmas bird count

Ecological

  • Two of the younger male elephant seals got into a fight/chase with the larger of the two dominating until Bernard (the biggest of the 5 males currently on the island) stepped in and sent them both on the run. With the females heading this way soon it may prove to be a bloody new year with the males fighting for dominance.
  • Large group of oyster catchers, 18-20 strong, hanging around the south west end of the island.
  • Didn’t see any canada geese today for the first time in a while.
  • Garry’s friend pointed out some harlequin ducks in the water I hadn’t noticed.
  • One of the elephant seal pups looks like an older male may have attacked it. It’s head and back are covered with lacerations and gouges.

Census Day

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 Miles
  • Wind:  20-15 NW
  • Sky: overcast
  • Water: calm

Boats/Visitors

  • A few ecotours today

Ecological

  • 11 elephant seals scattered around today, mostly around the jetty to cool off in the water

Census

  • Stellar Sea Lions: 33
  • California Sea Lions: 23
  • Elephant Seals: 11
  • Harbour Seals: 161
  • Unspecified Gulls: 212
  • Pigeon Guillemots: 53
  • Cormorants: 12
  • Canada Geese: 19
  • Oystercatchers: 8
  • Harlequinn Ducks: 0
  • Crows: 1

Notes

  • The harbour seal numbers have significantly increased but all of the other numbers seem to have gone down
  • The little elephant seal is back, I haven’t seen her for a few days

Nesting and Fighting

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 Miles
  • Wind:  15-20 SW
  • Sky: overcast some rain
  • Water: choppy, no more than 1 metre waves

Boats/Visitors

  • A few ecotours came by today

Ecological

  • 11 elephant seals today, 5 of them are male, and they have been fighting with each other all day the other 6 females have been pretty aggressive toward each other today as well
  • The gulls have started nesting and will get protective if you get too close
  • The geese are just at the end of nesting and are still pretty aggressive
  • I came across 2 oystercatcher nests while cleaning the solar panels today, thankfully they just get loud and try to distract you away from their nests rather than attacking
  • Also I have not seen the youngest female elephant seal around

Census Day, Thursday, May 25th

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 Miles
  • Wind:  0-5 NW
  • Sky: clear and sunny
  • Water: calm

Boats/Visitors

  • Many different boats around today

Ecological

  • 14 elephant seals scattered around today, mostly around the jetty to cool off in the water

Other

  • DND blasting continues

Census

  • Stellar Sea Lions: 42
  • California Sea Lions: 44
  • Elephant Seals: 14
  • Harbour Seals: 36
  • Unspecified Gulls: 321
  • Pigeon Guillemots: 120
  • Cormorants: 23
  • Canada Geese: 16
  • Oystercatchers: 8
  • Harlequinn Ducks: 5 males (that I could see)

Notes

  • I have not seen any eagles today but I saw them yesterday and they have been hanging around so I am guessing they are around here somewhere
  • There is another Elephant seal
  • An increase in sea lions as well as gulls

 

 

Census day

Weather

  • Visibility: 10 Miles, a bit foggy this morning but burned off by noon to partly cloudy
  • Wind: 10-15 NW got continuously more calm through the day
  • Sky: partly cloudy throughout the day
  • Water: stayed consistently calm

Boats/Visitors

  • A lot of ecotours came through today
  • Had a couple visitors, come by with Kyle this morning and then had Kyle and Guy come back this afternoon to help me out with a couple things

Ecological

  • Census day!
    1. Steller (Northern) Sea Lions: 35
    2. Harbour Seals: 44
    3. California Sea Lions: 23
    4. Elephant Seals: 13
    5. Seagulls unspecified: 291
    6. Pigeon Guillemots: 152
    7. Cormorants unspecified: 29
    8. Canada Geese: 14
    9. Savannah Sparrows: 0
    10. Harlequin Ducks: 8 (2 female, 6 male)
    11. Black Oystercatchers: 8
    12. Bald Eagles: 2 (2 adults, 1 immature)
  • There are 2 more elephant seals than usual! so thats exciting, they stayed scattered today on the path from the lighthouse to the jetty
  • As you can see there have been a decrease in sea lions, they are no longer on the southern rocks and have moved to the main island one group on the north side and another group on the southside
  • There have been an increase in gulls, pigeon guillemots and cormorants, also the harlequins are back, I did not see them last week
  • There has also been an increase in harbour seals, when I counted them they were mostly all on the Middle Rocks but have since scattered about the South Islands as well

Cenusus Day

Weather

  • Visibility: 10 Miles
  • Wind: Morning 0-5 NW picked up in the afternoon, varied between 10-20 knots NW
  • Sky: Overcast, bit of rain throughout the day
  • Water: calm

Ecological

  1. Steller (Northern) Sea Lions: 45
  2. Harbour Seals: 30
  3. California Sea Lions: 37
  4. Elephant Seals: 11
  5. Seagulls unspecified: 278
  6. Pigeon Guillemots: 125
  7. Cormorants unspecified: 16
  8. Canada Geese: 19
  9. Savannah Sparrows: 12
  10. Harlequin Ducks: 0
  11. Black Oystercatchers: 8
  12. Bald Eagles: 2 (2 adults, 1 immature)

Boats

  • had a few eco tours come through morning and late afternoon

Maintenance

  • Scrubbed some of the solar panels

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First Couple Days on Race Rocks

This Log will cover May 9 and 10 the Photographs are from both days

May 9

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 5-10 knots West during the day, 20-25 W in the evening.
  • Sky: mostly cloudy
  • Water: calm

Ecological

  • 10 elephant seals

Boats

  • A few eco-tours came by today.

May 10

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 15-20 NW throughout the day
  • Sky: mostly cloudy
  • Water: calm

Ecological

  • 11 elephant seals

Boats

  • More ecotours came around today

The Census of Birds and Mammals

Weather

  • Visibility: 10 miles, later 15 until…
  • 19:35 onwards foggy, 100 yards.
  • Fog horn sounded for over 3 hours.
  • Wind: 0-5 knots South East.
  • In the evening 15-25 West.
  • Sky: overcast, then sunny, then foggy.
  • Water: calm

Mount Baker near sunrise.

Strangely disturbed water.

Ecological

  • Census day! Counting stuff!
  • Found what to me is a solo mystery bird.
  • Surprised to see no Black Turnstones around today.
  1. Steller (Northern) Sea Lions: 53
  2. Harbour Seals: 35
  3. California Sea Lions: 29
  4. Elephant Seals: 13 (11 on Great Race, 2 on Middle Rock)
  5. Seagulls unspecified: 304
  6. Pigeon Guillemots: 225
  7. Cormorants unspecified: 21
  8. Canada Geese: 18
  9. Savannah Sparrows: 10
  10. Harlequin Ducks: 9 (6 males and 3 females)
  11. Black Oystercatchers: 7
  12. Bald Eagles: 2 (2 adults, 1 immature)
  13. Mystery bird: 1
  14. Black Turnstones: ZERO!

Maintenance

  • Ran the desalinator.

Boats

  • Lots of eco-tours cameth by today. Over 10!
  • Some of them were perhaps a bit too close to the mammals at times?
  • Kyle brought me my final food order; milk, red and green bell peppers, sour cream, and onions.
  • Eerily reminiscent of the Thin White Duke’s diet..

Visitors

  • Kyle with food stuff.

Navy Submarine!

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 15-20 knots North East
  • Sky: overcast
  • Water: 1′ chop
  • Borderline fog in the evening.

Ecological

  • The same ten elephant seals on Great Race today.
  • Through the window I saw a small flock of black songbirds perched in the bushes, but they had flown away before I could take a photo.
  • I went outside to try and find them, but by then they were gone.
  • Perhaps they were red-winged blackbirds? That’s the only predominantly black songbird that has previously been recorded in these parts that would fit what I saw.

Maintenance

  • Finished up and submitted the April report.
  • Hand pumped diesel into the day tank.
  • Goose work.

Boats

  • A few eco-tours came by.
  • One boat was fishing in the reserve, but I have seen it before, and I am pretty sure that it is a First Nations boat.
  • What I can only assume was a US Navy submarine with an escort passed through the strait south of Race Rocks shortly before 18:00.