Sunday, April 20, 2008
San Martin and Geronimo Islands
Finally a free moment to update the blog, I’m watching the boat while the research team and captain conduct a thorough bird survey of Geronimo Island. We surveyed the entire coastline and most of the upper sections of San
Martin Island yesterday the picture of the California Sea Lions posted was taken their yesterday
morning when a group of 4 of us were dropped off in a small sheltered cove to survey the coastline of the island by foot, looking for signs of an Auklet colony. The birds had been there in the recent past, as we learned by the presence of old nest burrows and several dead birds; but no live birds were seen during the coarse of the day. We did however see a reason why burrowing birds might have trouble nesting on this island, San Martin has a native snake of which we saw several two of those 4 feet or better in length.
We left San Martin in the middle of the night arriving around 8am at Geronimo Island, as we approached the lines started screaming and we wound up with two Bonita before we got distracted by the whales. A good sized pod of Grey Whales sat between us and the island, many of them can still be seen swimming in tight pairs of mother and calf in every direction of my horizon not obstructed by the island. They seem to inhabit the entirety of the deep water up against the outside edge of the kelp forest that surrounds the island.
Well that’s it for now. I'll try to post again soon, maybe with interesting information about the birds living on Geronimo Island when the team gets back.