My friend Wes Fritz who lives in Santa Maria to the north of Santa Barbara, picked me up at 5:15 Saturday morning on his way down to Ventura. He was providing all the chumming material--popcorn, fish oil, and beef livers and hearts. Todd McGrath was one of the leaders of the trip.
Once we got out to the seamount and turned in a new direction the rough ride subsided, and we were able to watch the seabirds. One of the better birds of the trip were a few northern fulmars (photo above--click on any photo to enlarge). We also had a few black-footed albatross, and one very nice laysan albatross (photo below).
My target bird for the trip was a Murphy's petrel which can be seen in the spring on this trip. A couple of weeks earlier several had been observed on a cruise ship that was being repositioned from San Diego to Washington state, so I was hopeful of our crossing paths with one. By the end of our 12 hour day we did not have the good fortune of doing so, but the trip was generally a good one except for those who got seasick. Wes dropped me back in Santa Barbara. I spent another day with my friend, and then headed up to Kern County, CA to do some spring migration birding. Stay tuned!