Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Pelagic Photos from Doug Koch

As promised in my last post, I have received a few photos taken by Doug Koch last month on several pelagic trips off the coast of northern CA. The photo just above shows Doug sitting in the middle with the black knit hat with his camera in a white plastic bag trying to stay warm. Sitting to his left is John Vanderpoel, and standing up facing towards John is Steve Howell one of the premier pelagic birders in the world.

We saw lots of shearwaters on our trips including the sooty above (click on any photo to enlarge), and the pink-footed just below.

We also had good looks at buller's shearwater shown above. The gull highlight on these trips was the sabine's gull in the photo below.

Since mid September when these photos were taken I have not been able to bird because of a bicycle accident that left me with a broken left collarbone. I have learned that this is the most often broken bone, and 90% heal without any surgical intervention. You keep your arm in a sling for several weeks and the broken bone "finds" a way to mend itself even when the broken ends are not real close together. This has slowed me down a bit in general, but I am still heading off to Italy today for a 2 week vacation to celebrate a good friend's 60th birthday.

While I am off partying, John Vanderpoel will be continuing his full ABA area big year hunt for more birds. He is now at 726 and has 2 easy birds still to see. With reasonably good luck this fall he could reach the mid 730's--an extremely successful big year effort that would move him into 2nd place all time.

Finally, the movie the Big Year is opening this Friday. It is based on the book the Big Year about the adventures of 3 birders who did full ABA area big years in 1998. It stars Jack Black, Owen Wilson and Steve Martin, and is being billed as the best adult comedy of the year. I will be seeing it as soon as I return from Italy. My review of it will be my next blog entry. Stay tuned!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Chris,

    I'm Gabriel Mapel (doing Junior Big Year), we met on the Magee Marsh Boardwalk where you told me that the Garganey was a countable bird and my dad went and got it.

    So sorry about your collarbone, but hope it heals soon and hope you're having a great time in Italy.

    I'm coming down to Chapel Hill area to go after the Franklin's Gull at Jordan Lake. Sorry you'll not be in the area, it would have been nice to see you maybe.

    Take care.