Census

Weather

  • Visibility: clear, 15 miles throughout the day
  • Wind: ranging from 9-22 knots throughout the day
  • Sky: overcast for most of the day
  • Water: calm, a bit choppy at times

Boats/Visitors

  • Didn’t notice much boat traffic today aside from the usual busy commercial freighters
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • More failed mating attempts by the young male elephant seals with the one female on the island.

Census

  • Cormorants – 90
  • Gulls – 275
  • Elephant Seals – 6  (3 adolescent males, 1 adult male, 1 adult female and 1 pup)
  • California Sea Lions – 120
  • Stellar Seal Lions – 93
  • Black Turnstones – 10
  • Canada Geese – 4
  • Bald Eagles – 7

    Three males surround the single female currently on the island

1st Female Elephant Seal of 2018

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles throughout the day
  • Wind: ranging from 10-23 knots throughout the day
  • Sky: sunny with cloudy periods
  • Water: mostly calm

Boats/Visitors

  • Had one whale watching boat cruise by
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • The first female elephant seal arrived today. One of the smaller, younger males was very persistent with her but the larger male mostly kept him away.
  • Counted 3 male elephant seals on the island today, 2 adolescents and 1 adult.
  • One elephant seal pup is still sleeping on the north side of the house and letting out the occasional yelps and cries.

 

Two juvenile bald eagles take in the morning view of commercial freighters passing by Race Rocks

The first female elephant seal to arrive

Three elephant seals have a stand off, with the female on the left and the two males on the right.

Elephant Seal Pup & Eagles

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles throughout the day
  • Wind: ranging from 13-22 knots throughout the day and over night
  • Sky: mostly sunny with some cloudy periods
  • Water: mostly calm

Boats/Visitors

  • Didn’t notice much boat traffic today aside from the usual busy commercial freighters
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • The same elephant pup is still hanging around the house. She’s been sleeping in pretty much the same spot for the past 2 days.
  • Lots of bald eagles around lately, counted 7 yesterday. 4 Adults and 3 large juveniles.
  • Large group of cormorants on the south rocks again in the late afternoon
  • Consistent amount of black turnstones around, about 8-12 seen per day

Cormorants & Scars

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles throughout the day
  • Wind: ranging from 10-20 knots
  • Sky: mostly sunny with some cloudy periods
  • Water: choppy at times with the wind, 1-3 foot swells

Boats/Visitors

  • Only noticed a few small pleasure crafts by pedder bay, no eco tours or divers today
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • Still the same 4 male elephant seals on the island. They had a lazy day of sleeping with no quarrels.
  • Noticed quite a bit of scarring on the belly of one of the larger ones.
  • large group of 50-60 cormorants on the south rocks again.
  • One of the juvenile bald eagles stopped by to say hi.

Talkative Elephant Seal Pup

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles throughout the day
  • Wind: ranging from 10-20 knots
  • Sky: sunny with cloudy periods
  • Water: choppy with the wind, 1-3 foot swells

Boats/Visitors

  • Didn’t notice much boat traffic today, one diving boat
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • I counted 4 male elephant seals on and around the island today
  • large group of 30-40 cormorants on the south rocks in the early evening
  • same elephant seal pup has been hanging close to the house and has been very vocal for the past few days, calling out sporadically throughout the day and night.
  • Saw 4 adult bald eagles around today as well as two large juveniles.

Other

  • This will be my last week out at Race Rocks until February, when I return for another month stay. Laas will be back for the remainder of January so you can expect much better quality photography then I’ve supplied! (:

Census & Five Male Elephant Seals

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles all day
  • Wind: Light breezes throughout the day NE mostly
  • Sky: mostly cloudy
  • Water: a bit rough, one to two foot swells

Boats/Visitors

  • Boat traffic was pretty minimum today again, saw one fishing boat go by
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • There are now a total of 5 male elephant seals on the island. Two are full grown and the other three are adolescents.
  • The two elephant seal pups are still around as well.

Census

  • California Sea Lions – 78
  • Stellar Sea Lions – 64
  • Harbour Seals – 2
  • Elephant Seals – 7
  • Gulls – 58
  • Cormorants – 16
  • Bald Eagles – 2
  • Black Turnstones – 6

Windy Day

Weather

  • Visibility: very clear throughout the day, 15 Miles
  • Wind: heavy winds all day reaching upwards of 33 knots
  • Sky: sunny with no clouds
  • Water: rough, 3 foot swells

Boats/Visitors

  • Boat traffic was pretty minimum today with the rough water
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • Not much has changed in terms of wildlife on the island in the last few days. Consistent number of gulls, sea lions, eagles, black turnstones, canada geese and cormorants with one or two large male elephant seals.

A Break From the Blasts

Weather

  • Visibility: Clear throughout the day
  • Wind: Light breezes throughout the day with strong gusts up to 40 knots overnight
  • Sky: Cloudy with sunny break
  • Water: a bit choppy, one foot swells in the morning

Boats/Visitors

  • Boat traffic was pretty minimum today, whale watching boat cruised by
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • Not much has changed in terms of wildlife on the island in the last few days. Consistent number of gulls, sea lions, eagles, black turnstones, canada geese and cormorants with one or large two male elephant seals.
  • Haven’t seen any whales of any kind yet unfortunately.

Other

  • DND blasting has taken a break for the past week which has been nice.

Stellar Pups

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles for most of the day with the Washington coast as clear as I’ve seen it so far, until early evening when fog came in from the east covering downtown Victoria from view.
  • Wind: Little to no breeze during the day with it picking up to 14-18 knots by 7pm.
  • Sky: Mostly cloudy with some sun
  • Water: calm throughout the day, a bit choppy at times

Boats/Visitors

  • Boat traffic was fairly minimum today with the usual commercial vessels in the distance and one or two whale watching boats.
  • No visitors today

Ecological

  • There seems to be more stellar sea lion pups on the island, especially on the south rocks in the last few days, though I may just have not noticed them among the “piles” of bodies as they tend to lay all over each other.
  • Still lots of Black Turnstones, Cormorants, Eagles, Canada Geese and Gulls around
  • Only saw one of the male elephant seals around today

Other

  • Chopped some bigger logs into kindling for the woodstove this afternoon and cleaned up a lot of rocks of varying sizes that have been falling from the paths and bank walls between the lighthouse and science house.
  • Pretty chilly today, had frost on the ground and frozen puddles for the first time.

Census, birds and mammals

Weather

  • Visibility: 15 miles
  • Wind: 6-10 NE throughout day
  • Sky: cloudy with some sun
  • Water: mostly calm, a bit choppy

Boats/Visitors

  • had a few eco tour boats cruise by
  • no visitors today

Ecological

Census:

  • California Sea Lions – 120
  • Stellar Sea Lions – 102
  • Harbour Seals – 4
  • Seagulls – 252
  • Eagles – 5
  • Cormorant – 22
  • Canadian Geese – 12
  • Black Turnstone – 3