Saturday

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 5-10 knots North West
  • Sky: clear and sunny all day
  • Water: calm

Ecological

  • Two e-seals on Great Race.

Maintenance

  • Ran the desalinator.
  • Did some goose work.

Boats

  • A few boats wandered by.
  • The Mahimahi, a US container ship departed from Seattle, was especially noisy as it passed by.

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.

Daffodils and Rain

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 5-10 knots SE, later N
  • Water: rippled
  • Sky: overcast, rain in the afternoon

Ecological

  • One lone seagull has been pecking away at the weaner. Nature at work.
  • Chunk attempted to mate with the grieving mother. Then he left the island at 17:00.
  • Great Race mum and pup, Lady, and Middle Rock mum and pup still present. No sign of Chuckles today.
  • Noticed about 12 harbour seals out on the rocks. It’s not everyday that they’re here.
  • The daffodils started to open up today. Purple crocus and various other flowers have been open for over a week.

Maintenance

  • Started organizing and tidying up the Student’s House.

Boats

  • The HMCS Whitehorse was out near Albert Head in the morning.
  • Two eco-tours came by in the afternoon. The second boat seemed too close to a group of sea lions, half of whom then stampeded into the water.

March 20 – Spring Equinox

Overcast with occasional light rain
Wind: NE 6-15 knots
Air Temperature: Low 9.2°C, High 11.2°C
Ocean Temperature: 8.8°C

The Spring Equinox brought more of the same weather. The daffodils, which have been in bloom for about a month, are beginning to die off. The canadian geese and gulls are still spending their days looking for their future nesting sites. They are getting more aggressive with each other. I don’t need an alarm clock in the morning, because the birds wake me up with the sun. The goose droppings are piling up in various deposits around the main island.

Courtney brought out a group on Second Nature from Pearson: Roman, Noemi, Roger, Catherine, Heather and Kim. They will be staying for the weekend and helping with some service projects on Saturday.

March 3 – Elephant Seals and DND Blasting

Sunny
Wind 18 knots from the North in the morning, switching direction to SE and diminishing throughout the day to calm in the evening
Air temperature: high 10C, low 5C
Ocean temperature 8.8C

There is never a dull moment at Race Rocks. At 8:30 in the morning, Chunk (the large male elephant seal) and the female elephant seal that has been on the island for a couple weeks were on the grass to the north of the Ecoguardian’s House. From the window by the front porch, I watched as the female roared and kicked up grass with her flippers as she and Chunk were either fighting or mating. It’s hard to tell the difference. He approached her and bit into her back, adding to the many wounds and scars. The female fled to the other side of the house and Chunk followed. They spent the rest of the day at least 10 metres apart from each other on the west side of the house.

At 10:30, I was sitting in the house reading the SOP manual when I heard and felt a huge blast. There was a large puff of smoke rising from the Canadian Forces Ammunition Base Rocky Point, 2km to the NW. There were red flags to warn passing boaters. After the initial blast, a group of people appeared from a bunker to inspect the area where the munitions were detonated. There were a few more blasts in the next two hours.

There are lots of flowers springing up around the island: daffodil, crocus, grape hyacinth, and calendula. Like several other plants that are not native to the island, they were planted by lighthouse keepers.

I spent the day reacquainting myself with the systems and species of the island.

The fog horn went off sporadically throughout the night, starting at 20:15. There didn’t appear to be any fog or clouds. The almost full moon lit up the night. It was so bright, I didn’t need to use a flashlight when I went to turn off the generator.