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Skye Haas reports from our latest Pacific Coast cruise

May 24: Skye Haas reports from our latest Pacific Coast cruise

The WINGS April 2024 West Coast Seabird Cruise was a total success with a great selection of both seabird and sea mammals observed. All four the "big targets" were seen well, and while Cook's & Hawaiian Petrels were a bit scarce, we did well for Laysan Albatross and had a fantastic total of 240 Murphy's Petrels for our time at sea. Other highlights included flocks of Sabine's Gulls, a pair of Brown Boobies, alcids like Tufted Puffins and Cassin's Auklets, multiple Pomarine and Long-tailed Jaegers, and a nice selection of Storm-Petrels with Leach's, Fork-tailed, Ashy and Black all being observed. The cetacean show was unbelievably good as well with Blue, Fin and Humpback Whales, Cuvier's & Baird's Beaked Whales, and on the last morning a trio of Orcas! Pinnipeds were well represented too with rarities like Elephant Seal and Guadalupe Fur Seal.

Common Dolphins were seen on multiple occasions 

A big surprise was a pod of 10 Baird's Beaked Whales that surfaced right next to the boat! 

Murphy's Petrels really stole the show on this cruise with 240 being observed!

In addition of several Laysan Albatrosses, we saw over a hundred Black-footed Albatrosses! 

A delicate little Short-Billed Gull trailing after the ship. 

A last minute surprise on our final morning of travel was a pod of Orcas that surfaced by us!

Several alcid species were seen, including these fetching Pigeon Guillemots

A Pacific Loon tries to flee the ship by crashing through a large group of Vellala (By-the-wind sailors) 

Posted: May 24, 2024