What we lacked in birds, though, we made up with cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises). This may have been one of the most amazing cetacean days ever at the Farallones. In addition to our daily shark watch, we also conduct a whale watch from the lighthouse. At the top of every hour, we conduct a 360-degree scan with our binoculars for cetaceans. Today we found our 2-3 resident Gray Whales (sometimes we can only find two), but we also found an incredible 15 Blue Whales and 93 Humpback Whales! Even more amazing were the 265 Risso’s Dolphins, 20 Pacific White-sided Dolphins, 12 Northern Right Whale Dolphins, and 5 Dall’s Porpoises – only the last three were new for Farallonathon. All these marine mammals are attracted to the Gulf of the Farallones to feed on its bountiful food supply.
The last two points for the day would also come from the ocean in the form of fish. One point was for a very large fish, AKA, a White Shark, while the other was for a very small fish, the Bald Sculpin.
The crew dug deep today to find new Farallonathon points, but there weren’t many there. The seven new points (2 migrant birds, 3 cetaceans, 1 shark, and 1 fish) brought up our total to 133. With calm winds still in the forecast, there was still hope for that long sought fallout.
Please consider contributing to our Farallonathon by pledging your support with either a flat donation or a point-per-species amount by going to our donation at: http://www.firstgiving.com/farallonathon. Your support makes research and conservation on the Farallones possible. Thank you!